Watch: ‘Challenge the status quo when it comes to data management’, says IMI

24 Mar 2016

Dr Tadhg Nagle and Dr David Sammon, programme directors of MSc in Data Business, IMI. Image: Luke Maxwell

You’d be forgiven for thinking that the key to good data management is as simple as managing data well. According to IMI, however, there’s far more that companies need to be aware of.

Data Management graphic

We live in a data-centric world, and there are few companies that don’t require at least some form of data management. The form that management takes can vary wildly, of course, but there are some actions that can significantly bolster a business’s value.

IMI programme directors Dr Tadhg Nagle and Dr David Sammon sat down with to talk about driving business value through data management.

First and foremost, said Sammon, it is of course important to have good data managers – people who can focus on data assets over IT assets, on agile over analytics, and who can be visual or design led thinkers, rather than technology-led.

It’s also important to avoid some of the common pitfalls associated with data management. The most critical is ignoring the cost of bad data.

“Organisations are losing an awful lot of money and they just take that for granted,” said Nagle. “They just say: ‘Look, that’s the cost of doing business’.”

Bad data can be avoided, but that’s not the only way to ensure good data management. Sammon and Nagle offered several tips for strengthening a business through data initiatives.

Nagle recommended challenging the status quo: “Challenge the way that people treat or manage data as they do at the moment, because I think a lot of companies do it just because that’s the way they’ve always done it, and I think a nice, healthy bit of scepticism around that will go a long way for companies.”

For Sammon, simplifying business is the best way forward: “If we rush to introduce technology, we’re effectively going to bring more complex structures into the business, and sometimes the business side of the business might feel like they’re being underserved or undervalued – in terms of their needs – by the existence of this technology.”

Kirsty Tobin was careers editor at Silicon Republic