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My Data is a Mess

It just happens, the nature of the beast, inherent in its nature, and dangerous if misused. I’m talking about Data Sprawl inside your organization.  Who’s to blame? No one. It happens and gets worse over time, and data sprawl occurs with the best of intentions. 

Your organization’s data gets pulled into so many directions, dumped in silos, manipulated by dozens of departmental perspectives, and driven by departmental budgets and projects. Gaining control of your organization’s data is difficult at best. Organizations and management spend countless dollars and lost time interrogating the data until it confesses.

Uncontrolled speed, competition, disruptive technologies (AI, Machine Learning,…) , new business models, and evolving customer experiences continually force established businesses to remain relevant, adopt or adapt. The ecosystem is an unfriendly place. Insight, predictability, intelligence reports, and decisions need great data in a timely manner to remain relevant.

Managing data and information within an organization must be an orchestrated activity between IT and the business units. The pitfalls and internal tensions of objectivity, unbiased perspectives, collaboration, expertise, and access need to be overcome. Not an easy task for an internal department or department. 

Just start. Begin by creating a good data strategy and governance program, a PLAN. A good plan requires 3 fundamentals: Executive Support, and Timeline and Funding. Orchestration of the plan often requires external expertise and consulting to address the pitfalls and internal tensions.

It pays for itself in the lost time trying to interrogate the data alone. Allocating good money to secure sprawling data silos that provide poor data. Allocating energy toward a good data strategy is energy well spent.

Building a successful data strategy requires a deep understanding of technology, business objectives, and data governance. Consulting partners can provide you with the expertise, objectivity, collaboration, and cost savings you need to build a data strategy that works. If you want to gain a competitive edge and drive innovation, consider working with a consulting firm to help you develop your data strategy.

Tim Taylor

ITSM Director

About Columbia Advisory Group

Columbia Advisory Group (CAG) is a leading Information Technology (IT) consulting firm. CAG’s team has assessed and helped improve the performance of more than 300 technology organizations and IT departments, including many higher education institutions, state agencies, and Fortune 50 customers. Practice specialty areas include Infrastructure, IT Service Management, Cybersecurity, and A/V Services. CAG improves business outcomes with IT insights and expert technical support. Based in Dallas, Texas, CAG works extensively with clients throughout the U.S. Contact us at

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