Data Management Risks Rampant Reveals New Research

/ Source: GlobeNewswire

REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Feb. 2, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Informatica Corporation (NASDAQ: INFA), the world’s number one independent leader in data integration software, today announced research figures detailing the enormous risks and inefficiencies that permeate the data management practices of most organizations. According to The Data Ownership Dilemma, a survey of more than 600 sales, marketing and IT professionals across EMEA, a lack of data governance, widespread confusion over data ownership, and routine sidestepping of IT to purchase and manage departmental applications and databases are resulting in needless cost-burdens and an epidemic of unreliable data across the enterprise.

The survey commissioned by Informatica and carried out by independent research firm Dynamic Markets, surveyed 300 sales and marketing managers and 301 IT professionals across the UK, France and Germany. In each case, accepted survey respondents confirmed they were at middle manager level or above, and that their organizations had at least 250 employees.

Alarmingly, 80 percent of sales and marketing professionals surveyed for the study lack complete confidence in the accuracy of the information they get from company databases. Even more worrying, 83 percent of surveyed IT professionals feel the same way, while almost all (97 percent) admit that problems can occur when delivering timely data or analysis of data to business users. And these figures are just part of the ill-effects.

"Sub-optimal data management has immense and far-reaching consequences, from missed business opportunities to the risk of noncompliance to unnecessarily costly operations," said John Poulter, senior vice president, EMEA, Informatica. "However, these research figures point not just to problem areas but also to cures that can be effected through a combination of uniform policies, best practices and the right technologies."

Lack of Data Governance

An excessive amount of unused applications and data, overly complex information infrastructures and lack of resources all make it difficult for IT to cost-effectively manage enterprise data and deliver timely information to business users:

  • 75 percent of IT professionals surveyed say their company has at least some applications on the corporate network that have been unused in the last three years. On average, these applications represent 25 percent of the total applications on the system, soaking up IT resources, power and management time.
  • 81 percent think their unused applications present a cost-burden to the company, and 86 percent believe their IT systems would run more efficiently if these applications were removed.
  • 46 percent cite a lack of IT resources as the greatest hindrance to handling the volume of user information requests, followed closely by infrastructure complexity at 42 percent.
  • 40 percent complain of a too-diverse array of databases across the organization, while the same number takes issue with the incompatibility of these resources.

Confusion Over Data Ownership

According to the survey, there are wide differences in who is responsible for the upkeep and accuracy of data held in enterprise databases:

  • 86 percent of respondents say their companies allow employees outside of IT to access the corporate database and 32 percent go as far as granting access and modification rights to all employees.
  • 52 percent of sales and marketing professionals surveyed think data ownership lies with IT, and 50 percent of IT respondents agree. But 20 percent think it lies with all employees and another 27 percent think it lies with individual departments.

Sidestepping IT

Departmental database ownership is now ubiquitous, reveals the survey, with sales and marketing employees frequently purchasing software without going through official channels:

  • 94 percent of surveyed sales and marketing professionals work in departments that own at least one database that they manage and maintain themselves. On average, among respondents, there are nine such databases per company.
  • 80 percent of sales and marketing respondents confessed to purchasing software without going through IT or procurement channels.

Finding The Cure

While these and other data management woes are a serious drain on business value and performance, they can be eliminated through a combination of:

  • Well-defined and enforced policies governing data assets to stem waste and prevent data from existing ad hoc and unmanaged across the enterprise.
  • A comprehensive data integration platform that enables the integration and leveraging of all data, regardless of type and format, to drive timely and trusted unified business views.
  • The placement of responsibility and tools for proactive data quality into the hands of data owners and data stewards to drive continuous quality improvements.
  • A technology-supported application retirement and archiving strategy to avoid cluttering up the enterprise network, and to eliminate extraneous data management costs.

"A sensible investment in any or all of these areas is well proven to deliver rapid and disproportionate business benefits," concluded Poulter. "But for enterprises to do nothing is to invite even more engrained and harder to eradicate risks."

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About Informatica
Informatica Corporation (NASDAQ: INFA) is the world’s number one independent provider of data integration software. Organizations around the world gain a competitive advantage in today’s global information economy with timely, relevant and trustworthy data for their top business imperatives. Worldwide, over 4,280 enterprises rely on Informatica to access, integrate and trust their information assets held in the traditional enterprise, off premise and in the Cloud. For more information, call +1 650-385-5000 (1-800-653-3871 in the U.S.), or visit . Connect with Informatica at , and .


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CONTACT: Deborah Wiltshire Informatica Corporation +1 650 385 5360 mobile/+1 650 862 8186 David Friedman Ogilvy PR +1 303 634 2674