Chief Data Wrangler

Cowboy
Never heard about, not surprised – I just made it up.

But it really talks to the role that seems to be missing in most organizations.  We seem to find people who are Directors of Business Intelligence both in IT and the Business.  But there is no intelligence without data and the architects seem to be saddled with the task.

So what would this person do… roughly get the data into one view so the BI folks can use it.

  1. Data Warehouse Governance & Stewardship – enact guiding principles
  2. Data Quality
  3. Get the Data into the warehouse (ETL / ELT / ??)
  4. Data Model
  5. Metadata – make sure it is there
  6. Give the user a view of the data with proper performance (EII, Views, Aggregates)

The job simply is to get the data into third normal form (or close to it) for use with good performance to the business.  Get the data in the hands of the user.

So when I called Graham this he laughed and asked what I meant.  I said a couple of things and here are the cheesy analogies

  • You are going to be herding cats – everyone has a reason for what they do, but we need to work together in support of guiding principles of putting data into the right place.
  • Think about our friends from the days of old herding cattle.
    • They let the cattle go out and feed and do what they want – source system / system of record data
    • Then the cowboy will herd them together when they need to derive value – sell them, look after them, account for them.  This is our move into the warehouse via ETL/ELT.
    • And ultimately they are in charge of care and feeding of all of the animals and keeping them in prime condition – this is our governance, stewardship, performance and so on.

So now we have a title for the person who will oversee the federated data and make sure that it gets the data into the hands of the user.

  1. Graham Boundy Reply

    Sometimes Data Wrangling is more about herding cats than cattle 🙂

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