The impact of data governance on corporate performance : the case of a petroleum company

Master Thesis


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University of Cape Town

While it is acknowledged that data is a valuable corporate asset, many companies fail to exploit it in order to better their performance. Organizations today need to be proactive in their operations and have to make informed business decisions in less time than ever before. This puts pressure on the organisations to better govern the use of data within an organization. Literature has shown that a holistic conceptualization of factors affecting data governance is missing. Also there is limited research on the effects of data governance on firm performance. This study therefore seeks to fill this gap by investigating the factors that affect data governance in organization X which operates in the petroleum industry and also determine the extent to which the quality of data governance influences its corporate performance. A conceptual model derived from the literature review was used to guide this study. Data was collected from 50 employees in organisation X whose job descriptions are aligned with data management via an intranet web based survey. Quantitative methods were then used to analyse the data. Results of the regression analysis confirmed four out of six research propositions made. Compliance with data policies and regulations, data stewardship and ownership were not found to be significant predictors of data governance. However, data modeling, data integration and data quality are necessary in order to achieve improved data governance. The present study also confirms that poor data governance has a negative impact on corporate performance suggesting that organisation X needs to enhance the quality of data governance in order to realise its full business value and also improved business performance.

Includes bibliographical references.