A CDO’s Guide to Communicating the Business Value of Data Governance

Don’t stop at creating value through data governance for your organization—make sure they know about it!

What you’ll learn

On this page we will outline a list of strategies to communicate your data governance outcomes in a way that will:


Encourage future buy-in


Secure continuous funding


Grow your team’s profile


Create a data-driven culture

The problem

Data Governance remains a complex and difficult proposition for most of us , and that is due for the most part to non-technological obstacles that can be overcome through communication.

Without effectively communicating before, during, and after major milestones of your data governance program, you’re jeopardizing its success and reach.

“I’ve been coaching Data Governance Leaders for many years and one thing is clear, no one puts enough effort into communicating Data Governance. Don’t ignore this - it is a critical part of a successful Data Governance implementation!”

Nicola Askham

Nicola Askham

The Data Governance Coach

Principles for successful data governance communication


Communicate how projects align with business goals

Without getting too bogged down in the details, the specifics of your initiative should be tied to overcoming hurdles experienced by your colleagues.

The first step of data governance communication is a simple one: ask the business about how data fails to support them in reaching their goals.

Then make a plan of how data governance will help and communicate to them how successful programs have helped with this in the past.


Create a stewards council and assign a storyteller

Creating a team and assigning roles doesn’t require hiring expensive consultants.

You can find your stewards internally and second them from other departments, training them in valuable skills such as data analysis, demonstrating your commitment to the project.

Make sure to assign a data storyteller who will be communicating with business.


Clearly define what is in and out of scope

Before attempting to take on every business challenge with your ambitious project, you should first establish what is in and out of the project’s scope.

That’s why we recommend to communicate incremental benefits and the project’s scope early on in your program.


Communicate created business value

One of the best ways to communicate the value of data governance initiatives is to create repeatable rules that assign business, risk, and financial values to your data. Try showing results via data visualization tools rather than simply trying to explain them.


Communicate the rollout timeline

Data governance is an ongoing modus operandi, which comes with unique pros and cons. It can sometimes feel overwhelming when practitioners and leaders first evaluate tools, techniques, processes, etc.

That is why the best way to go is by starting small.

Establish milestones that you communicate to the organization regularly via assigned stewards.


Tailor your communication to your audience

The data you are working with and around will have different levels of relevance to your stakeholders, so tailor your message accordingly to the following audiences:

Business and IT leadership

Business and IT leadership

Executive sponsor

Executive sponsor



Data governance

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