Thursday, 15 April 2010

Utilising the DICE Framework in Data Governance Initiatives

Your Data Quality or Data Governance roadmap will undoubtedly contain a number of enterprise initiatives that you wish to implement. These initiatives will result in change within your organisation, be it a change of organisational culture, a change of process, or even a change of systems.

The Data Quality space is an area where investment may have traditionally been low due to the difficulty of demonstrating ROI, and although smarter executives and business users understand the need for Data Quality Management & Data Governance, unless bitten many executives are still unwilling to invest time & capital in preventative and governing measures.

Due to the above, we may be presented with the challenge of gaining business & executive-level support. The sensible way to build momentum in gaining support is to demonstrate quick wins. Look for business problems in the DQ space that could be solved within a reasonable amount of time, with a manageable level of effort. Add value to the organisation, and you will see the momentum, and support for your efforts grow.

With this in mind it would make sense to attempt to measure the likeliness of implementation success prior to diving into any initiative.

(Naturally, you will never truly be aware of the chances/degree of success until an initiative is underway. However, indepth planning, analysis & risk mitigation will lead to greater chances/degrees of success.)

We can use tools for this

This is where tools such as DICE come in. The DICE Framework was created by the Boston Consulting Group and can be used to evaluate the likeliness of change management success.

Rather than trying to evaluate likeliness of success by looking at "soft factors" involved in successful change management, such as motivations, leadership & current organisational culture, the DICE framework looks only at what it calls "hard factors" that influence change success.

D
uration - either the duration until completion or the time between key milestones
Integrity - ability of the team to successfully perform & complete the project
Commitment - backing from the executive team, and support from the business community
Effort - the amount of effort required above the regular workload of the business

By scoring each of these factors, the framework will allow you to chart your change management project success likeliness, much like on the online tool provided by BCG.

Lets look at an example

Lets take the following initiative that features on your Data Quality Roadmap as an example - "Establish a Data Quality Resolution Centre".

The aim of the DQ Resolution Centre is to:
  • provide a single point of contact to raise data quality issues
  • promptly resolve all data issues
  • allow the business to track issue resolution progress
  • provide expertise & education to the business
  • create regular KPI reporting relating to data issues
It has been estimated that it would take around 1 month to create the resolution centre, establish the key processes, identify the key people, communicate the change, and agree KPI reporting. The newly employed 'Data Quality Manager', a person with solid experience in data quality resolution, and a strong grasp of the business will be taking ownership of the change.

In addition, there is support from senior management, although they refused to sign off the supporting 'Data Quality Analyst' role requested by the Data Quality Manager. The business community are extremely supportive, as previously their data issues have become lost in the world of IT. They've longed for someone "on the ground" to support them in their requirement for high quality and meaningful data.

Using the previously mentioned online tool and the information above, we can see that:

Duration: less than 2 months
Team Performance Integrity: Very Good
Commitment (Senior mgmt) : Seem to want success
Commitment (Local): Eager
Effort: Less than 10% additional

This suggests that the initiative is likely to be "highly successful".

Whether the Data Quality Resolution Centre is seen as "highly successful" by the business community six months down the line is however a further challenge, and a story for another day.

In Conclusion

By utilising the DICE framework, alongside evaluation of the softer factors that influence change success, you will be more prepared to aid in the selection, planning & prioritisation of change projects. This is particularly important if you are under pressure to succeed or risk having funding reassigned to another project. If 4 items of your roadmap are deemed to be of equal importance to the business perhaps it would be worth tackling an item which seems to have a higher chance of success first?

2 comments:

Charles Blyth said...

Another quality post Phil. Very educational in it's content and well described.

Thanks, I can now say I learnt something today.

Phil Wright said...

Thanks Charles - glad you got some use out of it.

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