Data-driven brick house, or house of modern tech cards?

The origin of winning insights? Sometimes, it’s an individual at your organization. Other times, insights come from cross-team collaboration. No matter the human catalyst for the breakthrough, it all starts with your data. You need to empower your people, across technical and non-technical users, with equal access to data. In other words, data democratization. And democratization begets the data-driven culture your organization needs for enduring success.

There’s good news and not-so-good news about organizations’ data-driven mission. The good? Most executives agree data-driven operations across lines of business is key to a winning strategy. Illustrating that point is the 85% increased investment in digital capabilities and 77% increased investment in IT, as reported in the 2022 Gartner CEO and Senior Business Executive Survey.

The not-so-good news? In New Vantage Partners’ Data and AI Leadership Executive Survey 2022, two alarming numbers highlight the struggle: 1) Only 26.5% report having achieved the data-driven goal, and 2) only 19.3% report having established a data culture. Those two numbers contribute to one particularly disturbing number: Through 2025, 80% of organizations seeking to scale digital business will fail because they don’t take a modern approach to data and analytics governance, according to Gartner’s State of Data and Analytics Governance. Modernizing tech stacks and migrating to the cloud are not enough on their own. Organizations must modernize their governance practices to fully uphold their modernization efforts. With no buttressing data-driven or data-democratization pillars, their efforts are built upon a risk-ridden house of cards.

Building a democratic, data-driven brick house

Moving to the cloud promises massive potential. But the benefits are equally matched by complexity. Each cloud service has its own unique method of security and access policy enforcement. Now, add the growing spectrum of regulations and compliance mandates that must be enforced and kept up to date across this increasingly complex and technically diverse data estate. Plus the increasing number of data consumption and policy stakeholders.

All this complexity creates massive friction between data consumers, policy drivers, and especially IT, which is tasked with physical policy implementation and enforcement. 

So begins the journey to evolve data governance. And with no single size fitting all, organizations are struggling. How do we build a sustainable, modern data governance program?

Six practical steps toward better governance

Create and document your data guidelines as to who can access specific types of data.Document policies to formalize roles, access, and capabilities. For example, what can each type of user do with different types of data?Perform data discovery to determine what’s in each table, column, row, or cell. Classify and tag the sensitive data based on the rules and requirements laid out in your guidelines and policiesCreate fine-grained access policies that will be enforced in your data layer, predicated on your defined guidelines. This is the basis for permitting or accessing data for discovery, moving beyond describing and documenting to establish where sensitive data resides.Expand base policies by defining and creating specific controls for enforcing encryption, masking, and tokenization across each data service accessed.Provide deep analysis and monitoring to provide full visibility, monitoring, and auditing into data access and usage – ideally via a single pane of glass for administrators and data stewards to monitor and control data at rest and in motion.

It’s possible to achieve centralized data access and security governance across your entire multi-cloud estate. All your stakeholders – such as business teams, IT, and compliance – can leverage a unified, holistic way to manage, define, and enforce data access policies across your storage, compute engines, and consumption methods. That’s what you need to power your data democratization and achieve a data-driven enterprise.

By using Privacera, enterprises get a single, centralized data security and access policy management and enforcement layer for efficient access governance across hybrid and multi-cloud data sources. Their unified platform simplifies data security and privacy enforcement by automating and managing the entire lifecycle, including sensitive data discovery and classification. Classify and tag data based on built-in support for PII, GDPR, HIPAA, and various other regulations. Build fine-grained security policies, automatically synced to your underlying data services for localized policy enforcement and execution. And reduce time to insight through orchestration and automation of manual data governance processes to fuel your data-driven mission. Privacera’s built-in data access request workflows and automation securely get the right data to the right people faster to power your data democratization.

Learn more about Privacera here.

Data and Information Security

As organizations accelerate their cloud migrations, they need both a strategy and a strategic partner, according to the Foundry 2022 Cloud Computing Study.

For example, despite their accelerated investments with multiple cloud service providers, 59% of EMEA IT leaders said they do not consider any of them a strategic partner. The partnership capabilities they are most seeking include security expertise, better cloud management capabilities, and strategic guidance on overall cloud strategy or a roadmap.

Working with a strategic cloud partner is more critical now than ever. Companies are adopting both hybrid and multiple clouds, which is creating greater IT complexity. They’re also facing significant challenges controlling costs, while struggling with a lack of cloud security and management skillsets.

These hurdles will become more difficult to overcome as organizations deepen their cloud investments. Meanwhile, enterprises risk employee and customer frustration when IT environments don’t meet their speed and performance expectations. Also, they may not achieve business objectives for increased or sustainable revenues if IT cannot keep up.

Take a building-block approach

It’s important to map your cloud strategy to attain business value. A building-block approach — in which organizations address the most pressing use cases first and build on successes — helps to minimize risks and increase successes.

For example, a global food processing company based in Brazil had deployed multiple clouds, in turn struggling to manage complexity and control costs. Their first step was to map out their pain points and then develop a plan to gain visibility across their clouds, including existing and forecasted costs.

Working with a strategic partner, the company implemented a multicloud management platform that uses automation to pull together costs and cloud assets in a single, consolidated dashboard. This visibility enabled the organization to increase efficiency and reduce costs — which in turn has allowed the company to invest in other cloud solutions.

Identify where expertise is most valuable

Most organizations have cloud skills gaps in their IT teams, and the current labor shortage makes it difficult to attract and retain talent. Once you have a cloud roadmap, identify where you will most need expertise — such as architecture, security, implementation, or management skills.

Even large enterprises with significant resources and IT talent on staff sometimes struggle to get cloud implementations up and running. For example, a multinational food services company in Spain needed to rapidly migrate a 6 TB ERP database and 130 virtual machines (VMs) from their private cloud to the public cloud as a backup and recovery solution. They couldn’t afford much, if any, business disruption.

The food services provider engaged with a strategic partner to plan and prepare for the migration. Although the planning took months, the actual ERP and VM migration was carried out in a single weekend — with zero business disruption.

Engage a strategic partner with deep expertise

Kyndryl has 30+ years of experience designing, building, and managing mission-critical IT environments, and has empowered 4,000 global customers. It offers critical cloud consulting and services, including:

Cloud strategy and roadmap development to help align platforms and services to your business strategyCloud and landing zone design with a unifying cloud solution architecture that meets your requirements for hybrid or multi-cloud estatePlatform and infrastructure modernization that aligns to your value chains and transformation goalsModern operations management that establishes a solid foundation for cloud platforms via DevSecOps, automation, and AIOps initiatives

In addition, Kyndryl offers implementation and managed services to fill skillset gaps and accelerate your cloud transformation.

Get your cloud strategy underway by starting here.

Cloud Management

The data, information, and analytics economy runs on well-curated, structured data. No matter your industry?having good curated data and content is critical. It’s increasingly important as more data and content are generated. Intelligent tools to sift through content are more robust and at the same time, more “needy.” That means modern technology platforms, systems, and even content consumers require well-structured data and content to perform well. As most artificial intelligence (AI) practitioners state?”nothing starts without good data.”