# Bringing Data to Life Part I

A Practical Approach to Building an Analytics Center of Excellence

Data is a valuable resource, just like water is in arid regions like New Mexico. In the same way that farmers must carefully manage their water rights and usage through contracts and agreements, organizations must also carefully manage their data to get the most value out of it. One way to do this is by building an Analytics Center of Excellence (ACE), which can help an organization make the most of its data by providing a central hub for data analytics and visualization.

The poem "Spring" by Jimmy Santiago Baca describes the arrival of spring in North New Mexico, as water flows into the acequia and brings life to the community fields. The acequia (ə-ˈsā-kē-ə), or network of canals, acts as a conduit for water, just as networks of data conduits can help organizations distribute insights and information to users.

In the same way that the acequia association helps to manage water rights and ensure the smooth bureaucratic flow of water to the fields, an ACE can help an organization manage data rights and ensure the smooth flow of data insights to users. The ACE can serve as a resource for answering questions and addressing issues related to data analytics.

# Aspirations of an ACE

The Seven Goals (aka, VAULTIS ) to become a data-centric organization, as outlined by the Department of Defense, are:

  1. Make Data Visible: Enabling consumers of data to easily locate and search for the data they need.
  2. Make Data Accessible: Ensuring consumers of data can retrieve and access the data they need.
  3. Make Data Understandable: Ensuring that the context, content and applicability of the data is clear and comprehensive
  4. Make Data Linked: Exploiting innate relationships between data elements to allow easy connections and understanding of relationships
  5. Make Data Trustworthy: Implementing robust data quality controls to ensure data is accurate, complete, and up-to-date
  6. Make Data Interoperable: Implementing standards for data representation and comprehension, to ensure easy sharing and use across different systems and platforms
  7. Make Data Secure: Protecting consumer data from unauthorized use or manipulation by implementing security controls and measures such as encryption, access controls, and monitoring systems.

Achieving these goals would help an organization to become data-centric, which would allow them to make better data-driven decisions, identify opportunities for innovation, and improve overall efficiency. With the ability to monitor real-time actions and gather evidence across channels, it is important to ensure that the service meets the needs and expectations of customers and users. By achieving these seven goals, organizations will ensure that data is discoverable, accessible, usable, linked, and trustworthy.

Here are some potential impacts that an ACE may have in your environment.