The Data Governance Office (DGO) will lead WashU’s Data Governance Program, through developing partnerships with the Data Stewards and Data Coordinators who are most familiar with each data domain’s data.

Together, we will strive for excellence in data accuracy, data consistency, and data integrity for our Data at WashU, enabling better decisions through data confidence.

Student Domain

The Data Governance Office (DGO) has partnered with the Student Sunrise project. The Student Sunrise mission is to replace the student information systems currently supporting WashU’s academic areas, reimagine operations in the academic and student support space, and seek to improve student outcomes and experiences during their time at WashU. The DGO is collaborating with student leadership to ensure data governance best practices are integrated in all aspects of data related activities to ensure the highest quality of accurate, complete and trusted data as a key deliverable. In addition, Collibra is WashU’s Business Intelligence platform that will become our source of truth for business terms, dashboards and other data artifacts to better serve WashU’s students, faculty, and academic staff.

What is a Data Domain?

A data domain is a logical grouping of data. It refers to an area of interrelated data pertaining to a common purpose, object, or concept. Since domains are aligned with data, they may be organized differently than our university organizational structure.

Some domains are very large.  These domains have been subdivided into functional areas to better share responsibilities and assigned the appropriate data experts. For example, the HR domain is divided into Benefits, Compensation, Recruiting, Onboarding & Time Tracking, HR Core/Central, and Payroll, which overlaps with Finance.

What are Business Use Cases?

In addition to increasing data maturity, these foundational data governance capabilities will drive business outcomes. While data governance alone will not solve these use cases in their entirety, it is a key component to promoting these business outcomes:

  • Finance – What are the expenses by school or program?
  • HCM – What in-house jobs have remained unfilled for over 4 months? 
  • HCM – How diverse are our candidate pools?
  • Advancement – Where do our alumni live (by program) 10 years after graduation?
  • Student – What are the demographic trends for majors over time?
  • Research – How long does it take to create and submit a grant proposal?
  • Research – What is the cost to prepare a proposal by department?
  • Med School – What is total cost of care for an operation at the Medical School?

Capabilities for Business Use Cases:

Key functionalities enabled by a data governance tool provides that build the foundation for enabling business use cases:

  • Business Glossary: Accessible and consolidated list of business terminology used throughout the university.
  • Cataloging: Easily searchable inventory of data such as reports with contextual metadata, operational data, and data sharing agreements, aiding in understanding and applicability of data and its governance.
  • Analytics Governance: Enabling anyone who produces analytics to see published analytics and work with analytics experts to correctly utilize analytics.
  • Taxonomies: Definition of a governed categorized hierarchical structure of entities, especially data elements and data sets, enabling an understanding of what system the data is connected to, what a data element is called, the definition of the data element, and its downstream dependencies.
  • Data Domains are high-level categories of Institutional Data which have been defined for the purpose of assigning accountability and responsibility for the data.
  • Each one is aligned with a business function, like Research, Clinical, etc.
  • Not a system or an application (Workday, Epic, RMS)
  • Each domain has one administrator
  • Each domain will determine who has access to data within that domain
    • Data Stewards will make further determinations about access to sensitive data within each domain