Financial services firms are making significant progress in data governance. But they still face major challenges in data quality, according to the 2017 Data Management Benchmarking Survey Report from the EDM Council, a non-profit trade association founded by the financial industry to elevate the practice of data management as a business and operational priority.

The biennial study, produced in collaboration with Sapient Consulting and software provider Pellustro, found progress toward setting up enterprise-wide data management programs and implementing data governance. It also highlights several key areas where industry capabilities lag in meeting the requirements set out by global regulators and market authorities.

The survey of more than 150 financial institutions shows that about 70 percent have a chief data officer and 55 percent report substantial progress in data stewardship.

Work is underway on defining lineage, managing critical data and implementing data management glossaries. This is the core building block for meeting the regulatory goals of harmonized data necessary for linked risk analysis, the study says. But progress has been slow to mature. Only 8 percent of the industry has achieved the harmonization of meaning of data across all internal repositories.

The industry is still mired in manual reconciliation of data and mapping from physical repositories to applications and reports. Trust and confidence in the data used for regulatory reporting and business analytics remains an elusive goal of these data management programs, the report said. Only 13 percent of the firms have achieved the definition and implementation of control procedures for managing data quality.

“There are clearly some bright spots for the practice of data management,” said Michael Atkin, managing director of the EDM Council. “We’ve made progress in establishing the organizational frameworks, but we still have a way to go in fixing the underlying data challenges that are needed to respond to regulatory requests and innovate in service to customers.”

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Bob Violino

Bob Violino

Bob Violino is a freelance technology and business writer who covers a variety of topics, including big data and analytics, cloud computing, information security and mobile technology.