Alation + Snowflake: An Integrated Approach to Data Governance

By Raj Gossain

Published on June 7, 2021

Data governance helps business users make faster, more informed business decisions. But data governance can be difficult without the right tools and processes. One must answer core questions, like, What is data? Who can use it? How can they use it?. These are not simple questions for an enterprise to answer. As enterprises continue on their governance journeys, they’ve had to decide between the need to reduce risk versus the need to democratize data. This is a false tradeoff and a balance between the two can be achieved.

Regulatory Risk versus Data Democratization

On the one hand, leaders worry about risk. Regulations like the GDPR, CCPA, and HIPAA mandate compliance of increasing complexity. In fact, during 2021, GDPR fines rose by nearly 40% and GDPR penalties totaled $191.5 million.

The risk of massive fines, plus the fear of using data incorrectly, can prevent the productive use of data entirely. Such fear leads to a controlled governance approach, in which data consumers must wait before they can freely use data. The result? Time is wasted and opportunities lost. The data may be “safe” under lock and key… but at what cost?

On the other hand, leaders want to democratize data. Data democratization makes digital information accessible to the average non-technical user of information systems, without having to involve IT. In this way, it can reduce the time span for self-service analytics, from months to minutes.

So how do you balance risk with access? How do you deliver data governance that meets the needs of both?

A modern data catalog will support data access, while reducing risk. By centralizing all metadata, and making it discoverable, governance processes can be unified across a vast data landscape. The UX has a key part to play: “governance guardrails” embedded in the catalog can teach compliance at point of use, and add context, which builds trust in the data itself.

Alation + Snowflake: An Integrated Approach to Data Governance

Data governance is a team sport. All data users must be aligned on process and best practices. The tools they leverage, too, must work together, which is why integration is crucial. Indeed, to execute a unified governance strategy across a vast and wild data landscape, software must work in sync.

Alation and Snowflake have deepened our partnership and product integration to help our customers achieve a more comprehensive governance solution, which allows people to use data without fear. This integrated approach enables analytic users to have access to the right data at the right time, while ensuring that privacy and other regulatory requirements are adhered to.

So how can you successfully implement an integrated data governance solution?

For those details — and much more — join me for my presentation at Snowflake Summit, on June 8th at 10:45am PT / 1:45pm ET: “What’s New: Governance in Snowflake.” In this session, I will:

  • Introduce an integrated approach towards governance, achieved via deep product integration between Alation and Snowflake

  • Explore how we help organizations to operationalize data governance at scale

  • Walk you through the 5 critical steps that are foundational to comprehensive governance

  • Showcase the new Alation UX that leverages these new Snowflake Governance capabilities

Curious to learn more now? See how Alation can empower your data users across the enterprise with governance that supports their goals. See a demo to learn more.

  • Regulatory Risk versus Data Democratization
  • Alation + Snowflake: An Integrated Approach to Data Governance
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