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27 July 2023

data lineage diagram

Data lineage diagram 101: A comprehensive guide

Have you ever been called upon to debug or optimize a data-driven process? For regulatory compliance, have you had to do audits? If so, you may have wondered where all the data you’re dealing with came from. In reality, you were looking for data lineage. Data lineage diagrams offer numerous benefits to help users just like you quickly and easily find what you’re looking for.

Data lineage is a fundamental feature of any data governance system. Its inclusion should not, however, be taken for granted. In this blog post, we’ll discuss data lineage diagrams – How they work, their meaning, and how using this invaluable tool can help ensure data quality.

What is a data lineage diagram?

A data lineage diagram is used to dive deeper into every aspect of change that happens in a data points’s entire lifecycle. This includes vertically, on different system levels, or horizontally, across the organization.

Everything that happens to a piece of data can be tracked down with a data lineage diagram – From the origin point to the point of use. Data Lineage Analysts have identified six key questions that can be answered by using data lineage diagrams to track data movement and changes:

  • Which departments, reports, applications, and processes rely on the data?
  • When was the data used, modified, created, or deleted?
  • Where did the data come from? Where is the data processed, stored, and used?
  • Why is the data used, stored, and needed? Should it be deleted if it’s redundant?
  • What type of data is it? What information is in the data? Which policies apply to it?
  • Who edits, creates, uses, and owns the data? Who is responsible for it?

The importance of data lineage diagrams

From source to target, the path of your data’s flow is illustrated courtesy of a data lineage diagram. The full lifecycle of data is shown by the diagram, so if it encounters any obstacles or dead ends, that will be shown. When data’s movement is depicted, an organization’s business intelligence team will have a much easier time determining exactly how data may have been altered and with whom it interacted.

Contact DataGalaxy for help getting started with your data lineage diagram

Count on DataGalaxy to help you organize your data so you can get the absolute most from it and transform it into a valuable asset for your organization. Check our calendar and select a date that works for you. Jumpstart your free 15-day platform trial access to get started!

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