Data Quality : An organizational rather than a technical concern

University essay from Uppsala universitet/Företagsekonomiska institutionen; Uppsala universitet/Företagsekonomiska institutionen

Abstract: Delegating responsibilities for ensuring data quality to employees close to operations is generally regarded as beneficial according to academia, rather than allowing the IT department full authority. The business employees are suitable for this task, as they have both a practical understanding for the business and a role that often is regarded as data-driven. However, delegation of responsibilities is argued to be one of the biggest barriers concerning data quality. This study examines this phenomenon by connecting delegation of responsibilities for ensuring data quality to research on the motivational aspects of controlling data, which lays the foundation for the empirical investigation.  This single case study was conducted qualitatively using semi-structured interviews. The data sample consisted of a business department, including six business controllers and their manager, at a large Swedish manufacturing company. Further, the data collection was complemented by conducting an interview with a representative at the IT department.  The study shows how business controllers are dependent on the quality of data, and due to their awareness of the benefits in avoiding data errors they are autonomously motivated to ensure good data quality. This strengthen the argument of delegating control of data quality to the business department, which gives the study practical significance.

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