Enterprise Data Management | 5 mins read

What is Enterprise Data Management & How Does it Work?

what is enterprise data management how does it work
Michelle Jaco

By Michelle Jaco

Implementing enterprise data management can be as straightforward as managing data for a small business through the use of a systematized approach.

Enterprise Data Management (EDM) refers to data quality at an organization's facility to secure, integrate and disseminate data from a variety of data streams. This covers the organization's ability to safely and accurately transfer data among applications, subsidiaries, partners and processes.

Effective EDM involves the skillful management of business intelligence from personnel who are proficient in handling data itself, and that they adhere to established protocols for handling and storage. The following details areas of EDM, including components, the roles and responsibilities of involved personnel, processes, and benefits.

Enterprise Data Management Components

In general, enterprise data management engages the following components-
Data Integration This part of the process involves the consolidation of structured data in an organization's diverse data into a centralized locale. This is crucial in ensuring that the disparate data are accessible. Types of data integration include virtualization, consolidation, propagation and federation.

Master Data Management Master Data Management (MDM) employs some data integration methods, but there is a distinct difference between the two. While MDM is concerned with reconciling business data from various sources and rendering it into a useable form, data integration is simply concerned with the consolidation of data and rendering it accessible.

Master data management has similarities to enterprise data management, but the latter is more comprehensive in its scope, it is listed here as a component of enterprise data management. Master data management is structured data of master records that describe the essentials needed for processes or a data strategy.

Data Security As should be no surprise in these days of proliferating data breaches and high-profile hacking in the press, security is a critical and evolving component to data-related strategies. Data security addresses the policies and procedures the organization has in place to make sure that data is protected from aggregation to dissemination, and at all points between, including storage. This includes not only protecting data from nefarious incursions (theft and leaks), but from destruction or corruption.

Data Governance This addresses the policies and processes in place that are used to ensure the data's integrity, quality, and security. It encompasses the standards relating to governance authority, enforcement and responsibility. It is the playbook or policy manual for how the data will be handled in a global fashion, and who has authority in this area.

Enterprise Data Management Roles and Responsibilities

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In most cases, enterprise data managers will be an organization's IT project managers, IT administrators or database administrators. While they may not be involved in the whole business process, they will oversee the process of managing the business's entire body of data and data lineage.

Since these parties will be intimately familiar with all technical aspects of data quality management, aggregation, transfer and storage, they will be most able to identify weak links in processes and ensure that data is minimally vulnerable to breaches, leaks and analytical flaws. Data management principals are usually overseen by the chief data officer (CDO) or chief technical officer (CTO), the decision-makers who can authorize policy measures related to data management.

Enterprise Data Management Benefits

How do enterprises manage enterprise data? It may be surprising, but according to Oracle, [They] do it through conversations, telephone calls, spreadsheets and e-mail. For example, if a departmental manager wants to add another cost center, or if management wants to move facilities from human resources to finance, the business decision must first be approved by all the relevant decision makers.

All of this, and similarly inefficient transactions, take time. Unfortunately, manual data management of collecting past and new data is notorious for leading to mistakes, and a lack of visibility and traceability of data. Because changes are made manually, often the end result is a lot of people making a lot of mistakes with a lot of mission critical datamistakes that go undiscovered due to a lack of visibility or traceability in the process. This is compounded by the sheer number of changes that take place in enterprises today (Oracle).


When an organization prioritizes data management however, it is ensuring that its data is secure throughout its entire cycle, and available when users require access to it. Finally, through a well-governed data lineage, managers and decision-makers are able to promptly recognize data dependencies and understand who is using data sources.

Enterprise Data Management- Process and Practices

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The data audit is generally the first step in the implementation of data management. The principal party responsible for data management will itemize the data generated, used or deleted during a given process. When the data has been curated in this manner, it is then presented in a standardized format.

A definition of deliverables is crucial in helping the organization determine the desired outcome of implementing enterprise data management. Objectives and end goals should be identified, as well as what is outside of the scope of mandates or goals. Finally, criteria for measuring success should be put in place.

It is essential that data administration and data governance projects are regularly scheduled in order to keep up with administrator and personnel changes, as well as hardware and software changes or upgrades. The IT manager (or other responsible party) will be familiar with these aspects, as well as incorporating maintenance protocols in keeping with the overall data management strategy.

Finally, the publication of documents in shared locations will make data accessible to the appropriate (authorized) personnel and ensure that they are adequately informed of contents, changes and updates to procedures. This ensures transparency for everyone concerned, as well as building trust in the strategy and promoting a high level of efficiency.

As companies grow and evolve, the number and complexity of the systems they use increases, so it is essential that staff involved in EDM keep on top of the available methods and technologies available for managing master data. Understanding the nuances of EDM may not be for everyone, but with the right tools, knowledge and dedication, any organization can enjoy successful, smooth EDM implementation.