Rise of the CDO

Biennial study uncovers expanding role of the CDO

EDM Council, the cross-industry trade association for data management, has released nits 2023 Global Data Management Benchmark Report, indicating the importance of Chief Data Officers across industries and the growth of data management as a formal discipline within organizations.

The 2023 Benchmark Report’s data revealed the growing strategic significance of the Chief Data Officer role and the practice of data management, specifically:

 65 per cent of respondents stated their firm has formally appointed a Chief Data

Officer or Chief Data Executive, up from 60 per cent in 2020

 86 per cent of finance industry CDOs now report to the C-Suite, increasing from 72

per cent in 2020

 80 per cent Data Executives in non-financial markets report to the C-Suite, with 20 per cent of those reporting directly to the CEO

“In my 30+ years as a data executive, the scope of responsibilities has expanded considerably, but especially so in the last few”, said John Bottega, President, EDM Council. “This year’s Benchmark Report shows Data Executives, and the data management function as a whole, taking on a much greater strategic role as they help to define not only their firm’s data management vision but also their analytics, AI/ML, ESG and sustainability data direction.”

This fourth edition of the Benchmark Report saw a three-fold increase in overall participation, plus responses from more industries, with 58 per cent of responses coming from non-financial companies, a 27 per cent increase from the 2020 survey. The Benchmark studies use DCAM (Data Management Capability Assessment Model), which outlines best practices for data programs, as the framework to assess how the profession has progressed its data management program agenda.

Survey participants indicate that 80 per cent have data governance programs in progress or already established. The Report also highlights the critical role of responsible, ethical management of the public’s data but the need for improvement, with only 62 per cent of respondents indicating the establishment or progress of sustainable data analytic governance programs, although this has increased from 51 per cent in 2020. The topic of data literacy as a crucial element of a strong data-driven culture is also represented in the analysis as a key factor of a firm’s overall success.


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