Qualities a Good Data Steward Should Have

A data steward is responsible for managing an organization’s data, which involves its collection, maintenance, and analysis.

Due to the vast amount of data that organizations now have access to, the role of a Data Steward has become crucial. Though their responsibilities may differ, their primary objective is to manage data resources and gain an extensive comprehension of the collected data.

The scope and obligations of a Data Steward may differ from one organization to another. In smaller companies, the duties of this role may be delegated among staff members who are knowledgeable in the area. Larger corporations generally employ Data Stewards to assist with the management of data lifecycles.

What are the responsibilities of a data steward?

To guarantee data correctness and comply with internal regulations, a Data Steward is accountable. They oversee the movement of information within an organization and establish how data is utilized. The duties of a Data Steward may involve, but are not restricted to the following:

  • Evaluating the available data and organizing the various processes for gathering and analyzing it
  • Maintaining the integrity of all data used by the organization
  • Familiarizing oneself with the organization’s data acquisition, storage, and analysis protocols, documenting them, and adhering to them
  • Implementing the organization’s data governance policy and ensuring that all business users comply with the established data quality standards.
  • Supervising a diverse range of assets and metadata to ensure timely and appropriate data accessibility for all stakeholders involved.
  • Evaluating our current protocols and developing, testing, and implementing more efficient methods for obtaining, storing, retrieving, handling, and disposing of data.
  • Attaining organizational objectives and obtaining a competitive edge by identifying the most effective means of leveraging business data to further enterprise goals.
  • Acting as a bridge between an organization’s technical and business divisions

Why is a data steward crucial for a company’s success?

The contemporary world has an abundance of data, making it a valuable resource. However, handling and analyzing such enormous amounts of information can be difficult.

Storage is just one part of the challenges that companies confront; the relevance, consistency, and quality of data also pose difficulties. In some instances, it is necessary to safeguard data security, particularly when it involves confidential information that must remain private.

Inadequate data management can have significant consequences for an organization’s profitability and reputation. Inaccurate data analysis, interpretation or storage can be harmful to a company if reliable data collection procedures are not upheld.

Appointing a Data Manager is critical for the company to ensure effective data stewardship. The Data Steward is responsible for guaranteeing that all parties involved in data management are held responsible for their actions.

The Data Steward’s role is crucial in ensuring the safety and security of an organization’s information. Protected data cannot be accessed without the Data Steward’s authorization. Moreover, the Data Steward acts as a link between data collectors and analysts, necessitating a blend of technical and business acumen for effective performance in this position.

The Data Steward is accountable for overseeing and securing data to safeguard the company’s reputation while also guaranteeing that all relevant information is retained and utilized strategically. The Data Steward must also ensure that data users are provided with the necessary information on a regular basis to assist them in making informed decisions.

Data stewardship is critical for the progress, reputation, and effectiveness of an organization. An important consideration is who can serve as a data steward? Before making any hiring decisions, it is vital to evaluate the necessary technical and business skills required for data stewardship.

Technical Skills and Proficiencies

Proficiency in Computer Programming

The primary focus of a data steward’s role is information management. However, they should also possess a good grasp of programming languages, such as Python, Perl, PHP, C/C++, Java, among others. To ensure that a potential data steward has the required skills, it is necessary to verify their language proficiency before offering them a job.

Proficiency in Database Management

Working with business records and adhering to the organization’s guidelines for accessing and managing databases are critical aspects of a Data Steward’s role. This necessitates extensive expertise with databases, including the ability to create and manage analytics databases, examine data to identify inconsistencies, and restore the database in the event of damage or hacking.

Thorough Comprehension of Relational Databases

Although non-relational database management solutions are available, it is essential for a Data Steward to have expertise in relational databases, as many businesses still use them. It is important to acknowledge that having a basic understanding of SQL may not suffice; one must have a strong proficiency with SQL-based systems such as Oracle RDBMS, Informix, Sybase, IBM DB2, Microsoft SQL Server, PostgreSQL, among others, before hiring.

Data Modelling

Data modelling is the process of identifying and analyzing the connections between an organization’s collected and utilized data. Although it requires a distinct set of skills, a basic understanding of data modelling and related competencies can be beneficial to Data Stewards.

Data Warehousing Principles

To build a “data warehouse,” organizations collect and organize their data, and thus Data Stewards must be familiar with data warehousing. It is generally necessary to have proficiency in OLAP, data integrity, ETL platforms, ODS, OLTP, schema, bottom-up and top-down architectures, and similar areas of expertise.

Technical Writing Skills

For data stewards, communication with both technical (IT) and business personnel is crucial. Therefore, it is important to ensure that any candidate being interviewed has the ability to construct technically sound messages. Excellent writing skills are also essential for effectively communicating ideas and engaging readers.

Business Proficiency

Understanding of Business Operations

The position of Data Steward requires proficiency in both technical and business aspects. In order to keep pace with the rapidly changing demands of various industries, it is highly desirable to have experienced professionals with a background in business. To ensure data accuracy, reliability, and completeness, Data Stewards must collect relevant data, making a sound comprehension of business principles essential.


Data frequently provides insight into potential future events, and it is the responsibility of Data Stewards to constantly monitor their data to ensure its accuracy and up-to-dateness. Utilizing data to anticipate outcomes is a valuable asset for those in the Data Steward position. It is recognized by wise leaders that action is necessary before it becomes too late.

Capability for Mutual Understanding

Data Stewards must educate others on privacy and security best practices. This typically involves conducting training sessions and creating comprehensive policies that all employees can easily comprehend. Thus, excellent communication skills, both in written and verbal form, are crucial to effectively delivering one’s message.

Capacity for Creative Thinking and Problem-Solving

Data Managers utilize their problem-solving skills to detect, update, and delete inaccurate records. Additionally, Data Stewards must establish policies for effective data aggregation and analysis. The successful operation of a business requires accurate information, making candidates with strong problem-solving capabilities particularly valuable.

Proficiency within a Department

Creating efficient procedures that benefit the entire organization is a critical responsibility for Data Stewards. Knowledge of individual department requirements is essential to effectively manage data collection and enhance its value. Appointing someone familiar with various business divisions’ needs can help anticipate colleagues’ demands, organize data collection and dissemination accordingly, and boost staff productivity.

Efficient Relationship Management

Maintaining effective relationships with individuals across various departments is a critical task for Data Stewards, who are responsible for ensuring the security, confidentiality, and accessibility of the organization’s data. Building positive relationships with teams, users, and customers is essential to earn stakeholders’ trust and promote the company’s success.

To Sum Up

A Data Steward holds significant authority and responsibility within a business, as data remains a crucial asset for contemporary organizations. Safeguarding and granting access to it is increasingly becoming a concern for those in charge.

Throughout an organization’s data lifecycle, Data Stewards play an essential role in managing it. To achieve success, they must possess both technical and management skills. The significant increase in job postings for Data Stewards in recent years highlights their growing demand.

Explore our global pool of skilled and dependable technical experts if you need outstanding Data Stewards who can seamlessly merge with your existing team and aid your organization’s expansion.

Here is the link to our database of experienced technical specialists.

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