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This blog series is based on a report from McKinsey Digital, link of which appears at the end. Continued from Previous……

Point #4 – Data operating model treats data like a product

Presently, the data is stored by individual departments and functions and protected as their property disregarding whether it is confidential or not. In this way, the data is split in so many ways that an overall sense cannot be made of it. There is a lot of duplication also which happens due to silos already present in most organizations. The IT department neither has control over data nor has access to it. The MIS – Management Information System is flawed from the beginning because it is not based on the entire data.

By 2025, data assets shall be organized and supported as products, whether these are used by internal teams or external teams. Data products shall be handled by dedicated teams to embed data security, integrate new sources of data as they come along, and implement self-service access and analytics tools. Data products shall evolve to meet the needs of consumers. Altogether, these products shall provide data solutions that can work more easily to meet various business challenges.

Point #5 – The chief data officer’s role is expanded to generate value

The chief data officers may not be present everywhere, but when they are, they and their teams are responsible for developing and tracking compliance with policies, standards, and procedures to manage data and ensure its quality.

By 2025, chief data officers and their teams shall function as a business unit with profit-and-loss responsibility. They will work in close coordination with business teams, develop the most appropriate data strategy for the enterprise and incubate new sources of revenue by monetizing data services and data sharing.

Point #6 – Data-ecosystem memberships are the norm

Data, as mentioned earlier, is usually taken as property of department to which it belongs. It is therefore kept in silos, and not shared for the common good. It may be shared with external partners, but it is uncommon and limited.

By 2025, large, complex organizations shall build and use data-sharing platforms to facilitate collaboration on data-driven projects within own organization and with other organizations. Most companies will be data-driven and shall work to pool data to create more valuable insights for all members. Sharing leads to more valuable data which brings greater rewards.

Point #7 – Data management is prioritized and automated for privacy, security, and resiliency

Data security and privacy are among the compliance issues, and the regulatory framework keeps updating to ensure these. The users have become more aware and sensitive about the fact that their information is being collected and used in ways which they do not even know. Current practices of data security are manual, tedious, and error prone. For the same reasons, data recovery is slow and interrupted. This affects the availability of data to employees for their regular work.

By 2025, users and customers shall be even more aware and sensitive about the collection and use of their data. However, organizations would have achieved required competency to handle data privacy, ethics, and security matters. The regulatory expectations would be raised with evolving regulations such as VCDPA – Virginia Consumer Data Protection Act, GDPR – General Data Protection Regulation, and CCPA – California Consumer Privacy Act.

Automated, near-constant backup procedures will ensure data security and resiliency. In the event of a breakdown, the data recovery shall be done in minutes, not weeks. The risks of technical glitches shall be minimized. Greater confidence in data security shall accelerate further adoption.

Pakistan Situation, Sum up, and Way Forward

We have seen where the world is going. Data is fast becoming the supreme force, deciding, and dictating everything. We shall have to come round to data-driven approach to deal internationally. Many of our businesses are dealing with international clients and they will demand data practices as per their standards. Many individuals and organizations also do work for international organizations, and they will have to align themselves as per their clients’ data procedures. These segments of business have no choice but to comply.

The large number of purely domestic trades may take longer, and it is acceptable. In every change, there are early adapters who get along willingly and early, there are forced adapters who will accept only under coercion, and there are laggards who may take months or even years to change.

The real concern, however, is that at the government level, the movement is extremely slow. We need policy frameworks, regulations, facilitations, and much more, which only the government can provide. We are in constant political turmoil for many years and every successive government barely does the day-to-day living.

There are several matters eliciting serious concern. One of these is that our gap with the developed countries is increasing. We cannot measure our progress by use of TikTok kind of things. In fact, we have taken up the negative parts and made them common use, while we left the positive part.

There are isolated pockets in Pakistan where highly developed work is being done. But these are too few and far apart to put the country on the track of development. We need structured, integrated policies for the development of IT infrastructure, data handling, data integrity and data privacy. Our banks and other institutions have shifted to online banking and millions of transactions are being done online. However, fake calls, messages, cyber crimes have also grown exponentially. I had one such experience and I reported it to cyber-crime cell of FIA who proved totally useless.

Our private sector majority has the resources but does not have the understanding to go into this direction. They are still contented with the traditional, manual working, engaging lot of cheap labor and getting things done via coercion.

It is time to take serious measures and develop digital sector to get included in the developed countries comity.


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