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Data Catalogs and Their Benefits to Organizations

A lot of organizations claim to be data-centered, but unless they have a data catalog, that may not be automatically true. But what does the term, data catalog, even mean, and how does it make a difference? A data catalog is a way of arranging data such that it can be searched, accessed and reused more efficiently. It lets organizations utilize data sources on top of users being able to add information themselves to the data pool.

So how does using a data catalog benefit organizations in particular?

Easy Search

Among the most vital benefits of a data catalog is the quick information search feature it provides users. For example, medical researchers can inquire about certain illnesses and receive the information in seconds. Additionally, a data catalog also comes with natural language processing for searching, further increasing the efficiency of the process.

Easy Access

You’ve probably heard this before, but protecting data while maintaining vital user access is an ongoing challenge faced by IT experts today. This becomes easier to achieve with the help of a data catalog.

Interoperability

Data catalogs offer a third benefit summed up in one word: interoperability. This means that the need for siloed databases is totally eliminated. A data catalog helps build a culture of collaboration and data sharing.

Thus, organizations should think about the challenges involved in scenarios where data sourcing is required. They may, for example, be at a loss as to where the needed information can be found or how they can get to it. Uncovering existing data is most people’s jobs, meaning, they may not be doing enough analytics.

Data Control

Strict data control can be hard to maintain simultaneously with regulation compliance, a fact most organizations are aware of yet still are having a hard time doing. There are usually two potential scenarios involving data: either few people in the organization can access information, or everybody does. Accessibility may not be a problem, but compliance and control will remain vital issues. Data catalogs are commonly incorporated into the currenty used security infrastructure for more convenient accessibility and control.

There is a huge chance that data-related laws and regulations will keep evolving and increasing in number, so organizations will do well to prepared to keep up. Simply put, having a smart and proactive
approach towards compliance is crucial.

Overall, you can maximize your data catalogs‘ potential by going through the right process. This chiefly includes identifying objectives, outlining technical and business metadata, controlling catalog access, determining the right level of allowed data asset access and providing sufficient metadata, giving access to metadata from the data cataloging product, and enabling such product to be integrated with other products as suitable.

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