The Data Challenge


Data Quality and Data Governance

To generate insights of value, data needs to be trustworthy. Furthermore, many business leaders recognise the need to go beyond knowing they can trust it, to being able to prove and quantify the quality of their data. Trust goes beyond the data itself and includes how it is used in decision making. This, therefore, limits the business’s ability to disregard the facts, thus driving any improvement activity to be very focused.

Building trust in data involves understanding the business impact of data quality issues and being able to articulate them to the leadership team.  Too often data quality is discussed in the abstract and it becomes hard to make the case for change.  The business impact assessment allows a risk based approach to be adopted – focusing the improvement efforts on the most critical elements of data. 

The elements of data quality are well known and it is possible to accurately and quantitatively assess quality of information in an organisation.  Oakland uses sophisticated analytical techniques and machine learning to replace the assurance of audit and sampling methods of the past. We call it the Data Quality Platform™. This approach mixes specific technical skills and capabilities with the need to drive business wide change to value high quality data.

Of course, improving data quality means nothing if the gains cannot be sustained. Oakland helps clients with a practical and pragmatic approach to data governance. Linking the various aspects of data governance and data assurance with the existing enterprise wide policy and governance activity.

Building trust in data cannot be done in isolation, we work with the Chief Data Office and other Data Leaders to help entire organisations take the first step towards a more data centric future. 


Build real quality into your data and give yourself and your stakeholders the assurance you need. Give yourself not only the ability to trust your data but also to prove it!

Building both technical and business capability

Improving data quality and strengthening data governance are important first steps.  However, in themselves, they will not be sufficient if organisations are to truly value and exploit data as a critical asset.

Building sustainable capability and business change is always a function of people, processes, systems and the underlying behaviours of the organisation.   We work at all levels to develop the appropriate skills and attitudes required to realise a data-driven future. 

We solve specific problems on behalf of clients, yet we prefer to work with their existing team to deepen and broaden their capability.  This work often goes beyond the technical team and includes the ‘business users’ of the services.  It is always possible to do more clever analysis, produce yet more data, or buy a new tool; however, it does not necessarily mean it is the right thing for the business. Too much data can paralyse the business, too little leads to guesswork, and poor-quality data can make for poor decision making.

This is why understanding the strategic landscape, in-depth business analysis and technical expertise is a critical combination when going on the digital journey.


Delivering actionable insight

Modern business decision-making must be data driven. However, developing real insight relies on asking the right questions of the right data, and interpreting the answers. Therefore, data can only take you so far…there is still a need to blend the art and science of making decisions.

The business must be supported on the journey to exploit its information better. Perhaps using new tools to unlock new insights or, as importantly, developing the capability to analyse, interpret and make decisions in a new way.

However, just hoping for insights from the newest flashy tool is not enough…


Posted in The Challenge