Improving Communication Between Data Modelers and Enterprise Stakeholders

Data modelers are responsible for creating and maintaining the conceptual, logical, and physical data models for an organization.

These data models are used to define the data requirements that support the business goals, but business stakeholders often have difficulty understanding how these technical documents correlate to their business processes.

In a recent DBTA webinar, IDERA's Kim Brushaber and John O'Brien, principal advisor and CEO at Radiant Advisors, discussed the value that data modelers receive by incorporating business processes into their enterprise architecture.

Modeling represents understanding, O’Brien said. Better communication between business and technical people will result in agile techniques that focus on understanding over documentation and iterative development to tackle unknown features and processes.

Data modeling techniques organize data elements by meaning. This includes entity-relationship modeling and dimensional modeling.

Business process modeling increases application development speed along with improving data modeling’s quality and accuracy.

Visual communication is critical for business and technical collaboration, O’Brien said.

Brushaber followed up with tips for good collaboration:

  • Business stakeholders should use business processes to identify what information they need to grow/improve the business.
    • Data Modelers can then identify the data that is necessary based on that information.
    • Business Analysts should engage the Data Modelers early in the process.
      • Data Modelers can help to identify important information that may be missing.
      • Business Stakeholders love “pretty pictures.”
        • Together Business Analysts and Data Modelers can create business process models (AKA “pretty pictures”) to obtain high level buy-in for their projects.

An archived on-demand replay of this webinar is available here.