From CW: Dirty Data Blights the Bottom Line

I stumbled over this article in ComputerWorld, and just saw the relevance to my post on the sexiness of Data Quality:

Data quality isn’t a glamorous topic, but Companies ignore it — especially for internal systems- at their financial peril.

I advice you to read the article since it includes a good case study, and some very valuable hints on how to go about asucessful DW project.

I feel like I am repeating myself, but hopefully I will wake someone up about Data Quality!

Is Data Quality as Sexy as Intestinal Medicine?

This weekend I was to a dinner with the Queens Heart Surgeon.  We talked about the hierarchy of surgeons, where he is at the top, Brain Surgeons is at 2nd and Intestinal Surgeons are at the bottom.  He is at the top because he literally holds life and death in his hands, whereas Intestinal Surgeons just has a shitty job.  Even though it’s unpleasant for the patients, they can learn to live with it, and it’s seldom lethal. 

After being to some Conferences and Meetings about BI and MDM, I ask myself:  Isn’t this how it is presumed to be in the IT world?  The big BI and DW vendors and integrators struts their charts and reports and show how important they are to the businesses and imposes as Heart Surgeons.  They claim that Data Quality is something you can take on the fly and want to project it as Intestinal Medicine.

Shouldn’t it be the other way around?  Gartner predicts that 50% of DW and CRM projects will fail, and the single most important reason is poor Data Quality.   It seems like it is the Data Quality Operators that are holding the life or death of these projects in their hands!

So from now on Data Quality Operators are compared to Heart Surgeons, and OK, I’ll give it to the big BI and DW vendors and integrators; they can be Brain Surgeons, a good 2nd in the hierarchy. 🙂