I was really intrigued by this article, mostly because I found myself disagreeing with many of its suggestions. I don’t disagree with having a source-agnostic approach to data, but I somewhat disagree with the premise that self-service tooling can drive instant business value.
Let me explain.
Collecting and sorting data from multiple sources more efficiency is an absolute necessity, and I firmly believe that companies should also invest heavily in data scientists and data engineers, as they can provide significant value and unlock deep insight into your business. The key is to use data scientists and data engineers in the right manner. This article puts forward a suggestions of a new cross-functional team comprising DevOps engineers, data scientists, data engineers and product developers. I believe this is too narrow.
Instead, I recommend following the Simon Wardley model on Pioneers, Settlers and Town Planners. Wardley makes the case that a different type of talent is needed as your product/service evolves from inception, through its development, and all the way to becoming a commodity. The key point is that the approach focuses on repeated long-term innovation, which is critical for any data project. Following this framework would support a structure that has clear focus and an agenda designed to enlighten, excite and drive data value within an organization. Seek out your pioneers, settlers and town planners, and you stand a chance of data being structured, unified and highly reliable.