IT GovernanceIT-Business Alignment

Why IT Needs to Tear Down Data Silos

Everyone always hears how important IT is to the business, and that any company that wants to be successful needs to have a strong IT department, but why? In an article for InformationWeek, Jonathan Feldman explores data, the most important aspect of IT and the part that needs a little more attention.

Data Belongs to You and Me

In Feldman’s opinion, too little time is actually spent on the heart of IT’s work: the basics of data. Data is what drives the information aspect of information technology, and there needs to be better attention paid to it. Data and analytics are supposed to provide better insight into the operations of the business and ultimately be used to improve operations.

How the data is actually collected, as well as what IT’s role is in the collection process, are important areas to define. In the picturesque ideal situation, the CIO would be heavily involved in any system that is creating data. The problem is that it is rare for the IT department to have complete control or authority over all systems, which makes the CIO’s control difficult. However, this should not scare off IT from taking on the task of understanding and making the system work. Even if the system is a digital service for finance, the data needs to be managed by the “digital advocacy department” themselves: IT.

Feldman lays out a great example of this, using a simple thermostat. Hypothetically, imagine a company decides to invest in new digital thermostats that are controlled by a central computer. The IT department would have no direct control over this, but they should still become involved. Why? The thermostat carries data that could potentially, for example, determine which temperature is most cost-effective. What company does not want to save money on a heating bill?

Even the most basic data can hold valuable insight, so never overlook it! You can read the original article here:

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