Written by: Aditya Mudiraj

Before looking at Data Stewards and their roles, it’s important to understand Data Governance. “Data governance encompasses the strategies and technologies used to make pure business data stays in compliance with regulations and corporate policies.”

As the importance of Data Governance grows each day, be it due to compliance or legal reasons, organizations are quickly realizing it as the central point of all data management initiatives.

Let’s take a moment to reread this definition. Data Governance is not a software that can be installed and automated; it requires personal contribution to ensure that the data meets its compliance, regulatory, and company policy requirements. Data Stewardship plays a crucial role – Data Stewards understand these processes and contributions. Most often they are non-IT team members who operate on the business side of an enterprise with a close understanding and care for the data that runs their company’s business.

However, many individuals who are identified as Data Stewards for their businesses may be unsure of exactly what their responsibility is. It’s important to understand key functions for the role, and how these roles can be defined and utilized for setting up stewards and stewardship councils within any organization.

Key Characteristics/Skills

  • Detailed understanding of the individual processes and systems that constitute the end-to-end data flows in their lines of business
  • Strong technical aptitude (e.g. ability to reconcile issues and profile data)


  • Coordinate across all business processes and SME’s for a given data domain
  • Leading the development of data definitions, data quality requirements, data security requirements, data privacy requirements, etc. Making sure that you data is strong and secure is of the utmost importance. As such, you can look here to see how PCI Testing can also be useful in these types of situations.


  • Create data quality metrics
  • Create policies and procedures
  • Identify pain points, options, and remediation activities
  • Coordinate with other Data Stewards and support functions on identifying, resolving, and prioritizing data issues
  • Develop performance guidelines for data SME’s
  • Monitor and certify the quality of data
  • Propose new or revisions to existing policies, procedures, and tools
  • Partner with data custodians to implement data standards

Successful adoption of these responsibilities ultimately leads to the success of Data Stewards and therefore a company’s Data Governance program.

1. Informatica, https://www.informatica.com/services-and-training/glossary-of-terms/data-governance-definition.html#fbid=zbsb2oU9nAZ