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On October 8-10, 2012, the Americas' SAP Users' Group held their 8th annual Data Governance (DG) Special Interest Group (SIG) event hosted by two members of the SAP data governance community, Baker Hughes and Sysco Corporation, in Houston, Texas.  We caught up with Jodi K Maciejewski, chair of the ASUG DG SIG and director of data governance at Conagra Foods, to hear the latest highlights from this year’s exciting event.

By the Numbers:

What is the goal of this free conference?

"The ASUG DG SIG event is focused on getting SAP customers together in one location to discuss data and information governance related topics such as people, process, and technologies. This is more than a technology conference because it focuses on letting community members tell their stories, lessons learned, and successes.  Also, it is an opportunity for organizations to learn about the latest SAP technologies that support information governance. For me, it’s an opportunity to network with peers to understand how they are approaching the problem differently and to have context to refer back throughout the year because of the relationships we have built with each other."

What were some of the highlights from the event this year?

"We had the highest interest level and number of attendees this year. Yet, it was a great balance of new attendees and returning attendees to make the event a place to learn and share ideas and best practices. The overall quality of presentations was impressive this year with great customer stories, partner sessions, and industry analyst presentations."

Definitely the top highlight for this year is the coming up with the idea and making a reality the successful execution of the first ever information governance project award: “The IGgie”. The award recognizes the best achievements and innovations from our data governance community.  The number of high quality submissions were quite impressive given the short notice. This year The IGgie was awarded to the team from The Coca-Cola Company who demonstrated an impressive advancement in their data governance program with the ability to show metrics and KPIs that showed data quality scores as well as business impact from enhanced productivity. Johnson & Johnson was the runner up this year and demonstrated amazing business results as well. "


What key themes emerged from the event this year?

"A few key themes emerged this year at the 2012 ASUG DG SIG event.

  • Members are starting to talk about metrics and what they are measuring such as productivity and capacity resource dimensions and data quality dimensions.
  • We saw greater use of the SAP enterprise information management (EIM) tools such as SAP Information Steward, SAP Data Services, and SAP Master Data Governance; and people starting to talk about how they are using them to automate their data governance processes.
  • We saw less about how to get started and more about how to sustain information governance programs and how to evolve their organizational process or technologies as needed
  • There is continued emphasis on data quality which in my opinion is more of a marathon than a sprint.
  • More organizations are starting to think about data governance outside of master data and started to branch out to information governance such to support big data needs."

What innovative things are customers doing to achieve success with information governance?

  • "Members are looking beyond big master data domains such as vendor, customer, and material and working on purchasing information records (PIR) and APO data, as well as other master data areas.
  • Big data is a topic customers are beginning to explore
  • Organizations like Johnson & Johnson are applying rules readiness methodology to assess the health of their business rules and how does it lend itself to being able to go live with their process enhancement."

What can we expect for next year?

"I am happy to confirm the 9th annual ASUG DG SIG event is in the works and will be held around October 2013. We will be sending out a survey to hear from our members, and continue to make this annual event even better.  We will continue The IGgie Award and plan to increase awareness in the SAP community so it becomes the coveted honor for organizations doing amazing things with information governance."

In summary, I hope you enjoyed learning about the amazing things that happened at this year's event. For those of you who missed the event, you may download all of the session presentations at the ASUG DG SIG website. You must be an ASUG member in order to download.  Learn more about SAP solutions for information governance. Don't miss the two Live Webinars coming up in November on SAP Master Data Governance and SAP Information Steward. Click here to register.

Can You Measure Your Data? Start Using Information Steward Today
Date: November 7, 2012
Time: 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. ET / 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. PST

SAP Master Data Governance – A Complete Governance Solution for Your Organization
Date: November 13, 2012
Time: 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. ET / 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. PST