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Data Marketplace: Find, understand, access, and collaborate for data value realization

Many organizations struggle to realize value from data, leading to missed revenue and business opportunities. Having access to relevant data is critical for every value-adding use case.

Being able to find relevant data inside your organization, understand it, and get access is essential for realizing value from data. We at AdEx Partners believe that having a well-functioning data marketplace is one of the 4 key components for an effective & efficient data value realization by providing access to relevant data.

A data marketplace is a combination of different software solutions, that in turn, allow your organization’s employees to find and understand available data, get access, share, and collaborate to realize value from data. Imagine your organizations own Amazon-style data marketplace, which can be easily accessed and used by your employees to satisfy data needs and become data entrepreneurs within your organization.

An internal data marketplace supports these key capabilities by making all data:

  1. findable; like Google does for the world wide web
  2. understandable; like Wikipedia does with knowledge
  3. accessible; like Amazon does with online shopping
  4. crowdsourceable; like GitHub does for code

Data value realization starts with finding relevant data for use. Therefore, organizations must first have an overview of what data is available and understand it to determine its relevancy. The data marketplace solves this issue by making all datasets within the organization findable in one place. By making all data easily findable, organizations increase exposure of their data to potential data users, such as citizen data scientists and engineers, inevitably leading to more usage and more value being realized from your data.

Finding relevant data can be an iterative process. So, being able to quickly assess and understand the newfound data is essential in determining its relevancy for each use case. The data marketplace achieves this by using a data catalog to collect and derive relevant information on the underlying data. By combining different data summarization techniques such as data profiling, metadata, data dictionaries, and data lineage your employees get a good understanding of the data.

The data marketplace also uses data knowledge graphs to show connected and other potentially interesting datasets to the data consumers browsing the marketplace. This concept works similarly to how Amazon displays other items that might be interesting to you or items other customers have also looked at. Requesting access to data should be as easy as checking data out in your “shopping cart”. Data scientists waste a large portion of their time finding, understanding, and getting access to relevant data. The data marketplace makes this as easy as possible and increasing the “employee experience” around data usage.

Through the constant searching and understanding of your data, the data marketplace encourages collecting feedback, thus crowdsourcing your data management in a constructive way within your organization. The embedded crowdsourcing and data management functions, help increase the overall understandability, data quality, and data linkage of your data assets. By having hundreds or thousands of people looking at and re-using data sets, errors will be quickly found, suggestions for improvement exchanged, and finally fixed.          
In addition to this, the data marketplace is a collaboration accelerator, by making easy and safe data sharing between teams possible and helping them identify and use data assets. GitHub has done the same for software code, making re-use and innovation much easier for developers.      
Through the function of sharing data bi-directionally by uploading & downloading datasets and collecting feedback the data marketplace allows for a high degree of collaboration that greatly promotes a data use culture inside your organization. By enabling your employees to discover, discuss and rate datasets, it will increase employee engagement, spread the awareness of data-as-an-asset, and in turn, lead to a higher degree of use and data value realization.

The goal of many organizations is to leverage data to create value for their customers and their organization through automation and superior products & services. The re-useability of data is essential to provide value-adding use cases with short time2market durations. By creating this single access point for all data needs inside your organization, the data marketplace will decrease data silos and “dark data”, which is impeding widespread data sharing & collaboration.

Unlike most assets, data does not deprecate with usage; instead, it gains more value the more it is used. Therefore, collecting and providing feedback on data increases its visibility, understandability, and data quality. Data entrepreneurs are the new value creators in your organization. AdEx Partners can help you design and implement your own data marketplace. Contact us today to learn more!

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Stark Burns Data Analytics Evangelist
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