Metadata is “data about data”. Every company has several processes for conducting its business and for supporting its activities; these processes are using different data, structures and calculations. The description of these structures, calculations and the results, relations and execution related attributes of these processes are all important information that enable companies to response quickly and efficiently to changing business requirements.

The metadata of the organization define a common “language” enabling the employees and information systems to communicate more easily. Besides metadata help to identify the data stored in the company’s systems and the way to manage/control it, by:

  • Showing the data together with its business context;
  • Specifying its location within the IT system(s);
  • Controlling the execution of different IT processes, e.g. data extraction, loading, etc.

By implementing and using a metadata solution companies can fulfill the following needs:

  • Building a company or organization level Business Glossary;
  • Document the exact meaning and calculation rules of all reports metrics/KPIs;
  • Enable lineage and impact analysis to allow preliminary checking the cause and effect of changes in processes and/or data structures;
  • Help to optimize resource usage by storing historical data on it;
  • Allow measurement of usage on systems, processes, data structures;
  • Help to pinpoint the suboptimal processes;
  • etc.

There are business and technical metadata, which have different characteristics like goal, usage methods, format and sources.

The Business Metadata has:

  • Users:
    • Business user community (and some of the IT staff e.g. system architects).
  • Goal:
    • Help to maximize the value of collected data (that are stored in the different IT systems).
  • Formats and typical sources:
    • Business glossary, definitions, business rules, hierarchy descriptions;
    • Queries, business views, data navigation rules;
    • Data on information usage and spread;
    • Help Desk (names, knowledge areas, phone numbers);
    • etc.

The Technical Metadata has:

  • Users:
    • System architects, designers, developers and administrators (and a small group of business users)
  • Goal:
    • Collection and description of data required to design, develop, implement and maintain the IT systems.
  • Formats and typical sources:
    • Databases, tables, columns, indexes, references;
    • Data sources, data mapping and transformation rules;
    • Data administration and management rules and procedures;
    • Monitoring of system usage and process execution;
    • etc.

In the area of Metadata Management we provide our services in assessments, reviews, strategy development, technology and vendor selection. Based on our customers’ needs we can recommend packaged software or develop custom-made solutions, too.