A business glossary is a major component within a data governance (or data intelligence) initiative. Glossary entries consist of a name and a functional definition. The purpose of a functional definition is to explain the meaning of a piece of data in such a way that anyone within the organization could understand the meaning of that piece of data. A glossary entry is different from a data dictionary item. A glossary entry has more narrative, and a single glossary entry may cover several dictionary items. For example, the glossary entry would be Employee Legal Address and it would cover data dictionary items such as Address Line 1, City, State, Zip Code, etc.
Organizations need hundreds of glossary entries to comprehensively explain their data, and the functional definition needs to be written fairly quickly. How do you train staff to write good definitions? What is a good definition? Typically definitions are written by multiple people, none of whom are lexicographers by training. At IData we teach a method for writing functional definitions that is easy to learn and to use. Adopting this method prevents circular or vacuous definitions and it provides a framework that ensures consistency across multiple writers.
- Uniqueness within a category OR Description*
- Re-use definitions within definitions*
- Add business rules
- Add valid values or reference data lists
- Add quality rules
- Edit the definition for the perspective of the smart outsider*
If you need help in implementing data governance, remember that IData provides data governance services. A data governance solution like the Data Cookbook can help in successful implementation of data governance at an organization and improving data quality. Feel free to .
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