For any credit union that aspires to derive insight and business value from their data, the discipline of data governance is essential.

What Is Data Governance?

Think of data governance as a quality control discipline that governs the overall management, usage, storage, monitoring, and protection of the credit union’s data. Without a dedicated governance process, overtime, poor data quality leads to inferior service, reduced employee productivity, missed opportunities, and increased costs.

If you’re in the midst of building a case for greater data governance within the credit union, consider the following payoffs of stewarding the data.

Improved Revenue: Using high quality, clean data, credit unions can accurately analyze the spending patterns and changes in life stage of their members. This allows the credit union to pinpoint the right message at the right time to offer new products, up sell and cross-sell services, and even provide financial advice. Promptly acting on these opportunities will lead to profitable business outcomes.

Better Decision Making: Drawing accurate conclusions from the data is hindered when data is scattered across a variety of departments, processes and applications. This results in incomplete, incorrect and inconsistent information. When data is maintained and managed with proper data governance controls, quality data can be translated into actionable insights that decision makers can use to evaluate opportunities and execute strategies.

Greater Confidence: Data and analytics can be worthless when the data is not properly governed. When your data is accurate, effective, complete and trustworthy, employees and decision-makers will rely on it to formulate strategies for member engagement opportunities, new member acquisition programs, product and service development, and much more.

Improved Member Service: Today’s credit unions must understand what products and services their members might need. What types of investments may interest members? What types of products and services are they looking for? Having accurate and timely information on member preferences and concerns is vital to providing good service and nurturing member relationships.

Competitive Advantage: To address changing member preferences, credit unions need to develop new capabilities. If you can make better decisions because your decisions are backed by data that have been robustly collected, cleaned and analyzed, you can beat the competition by predicting next best product opportunities, new markets and demographics as well as effective marketing and new member acquisition campaigns.

Reduced Expenses: One of the major benefits to governing data is cost reduction. Improved member data and the consolidation of data into a single source can lead to significant operating cost savings. Using the data to find and eliminate wasteful practices, wrong mailing addresses, redundancy and inefficiency, the credit union can save time and money and reinvest that savings into enhancing member service.

Do you have a team responsible for data’s accuracy, accessibility, consistency, and completeness? The Knowlton Group can help your data governance initiatives remain on track as you continue to deliver a return on your data and analytics investments.  Send us an email or give us a call at 860-593-7842 today to learn how we can help.

Stay tuned! Our next article will provide a tip sheet on data governance best practices.



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  1. […] In my last piece, I covered why data governance is critical to the credit union’s analytic strategy. Now, we’ll share some best practices on how to create a data governance program through a combination of data committees, corporate policies, and accountability. […]

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