Over a Third of UK CDOs Lack Understanding of Their Data, Study Shows

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CDos lack understanding

A recent report by Informatica has found that more than a third of UK chief data officers (CDOs) lack visibility and a clear understanding of their growing data estates. 

The annual global research report, which surveyed 86 UK CDOs and Chief Data & Analytics Officers, revealed that 36 per cent of CDOs failed to view and comprehend the scale of their data, at a time when data is expected to grow further in the year ahead. 

Over half of the respondents also said they predict their data sources will continue to grow due to analytics (92 per cent), cloud (88 per cent), and business applications (87 per cent). 

But almost a third said this increasing volume and variety of data is one of their organisation's main obstacles to achieving their data strategy.

“For organisations to truly build a competitive advantage, the role of the CDO and their ability to bring data to life throughout the business is critical,” Greg Hanson, VP of EMEA and LATAM at Informatica explained. 

“With ever-increasing volumes and sources of data, comes greater proliferation and fragmentation. This makes it difficult to get a holistic view of data and extract value and actionable insights,” MR Hanson added. 

Data and cloud investments continue  

Despite their lack of understanding of the scale of their data, the majority of CDOs said they remain optimistic about their data and cloud strategies and are continuing investment. 

94 per cent of respondents said they expected cloud expenditure to stay the same or increase, while 92 per cent expect expenditure on data to remain the same or increase this year. 

Much of this increased investment will focus on data sharing and data governance, which were the majority of CDOs' top priorities for the year ahead.

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Of all the areas of investment for the year, over half said they would be increasing spending on data quality capabilities, while just under half said data protection and data marketplaces would be their top areas of investment in 2023. 

Data strategies remain strong 

With many organisations facing economic challenges due to heightened inflation and the looming recession, their continued investment in data and the cloud demonstrates they are prioritising data strategies at the same level as wider business goals. 

80 per cent of UK CDOs said their organisation was prioritising its data strategy in line with business objectives such as optimising supply chains, enhancing collaboration and improving business agility. 

Respondents added that this prioritisation has given them confidence in the effectiveness of their business strategy, making them the most confident in Europe. 

In total, 80 per cent of UK CDOs classed their current data strategy model as very or completely effective compared to only 63 per cent of those in France and 62 per cent of those in Germany. 

The report highlighted that the top metric for reporting this effectiveness was improving the quality of analytics used for decision-making, improving the timeliness of data delivery and improving how data is used in decision-making and operational procedures.

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