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Metapedia – What’s That Used For?

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Information Steward’s Metapedia promotes proactive data governance with common understanding and agreement on business taxonomies related to business data. With Metapedia, users have a central location for defining standard business vocabulary of words, phrases, or business concepts and relating that terminology to metadata objects (e.g. systems, tables, reports) as well as Data Insight quality rules and scorecards. Once the business glossary is established, business users can easily search the content and concepts using familiar business vocabulary and synonyms as well as access related terms from BI reports, data quality scorecards, … well, from really just about anywhere (see Exploring and Accessing Metapedia terms).

So, why might you want to start a Metapedia initiative?  Let’s explore some use cases.

Business Intelligence


Think about the value of giving your BI consumers – especially if those consumers are across multiple lines of business – access to a standard definition of the data used to drive reports and dashboards.  For example, let’s say a new HR report is created that displays information about Org Divisions, Dept Units, Career Grades and Levels, Local and Global Titles, etc. Wouldn’t it be great if consumers, especially outside of the Human Resources team, could gain access to the accepted and HR-approved understanding of each of these concepts represented on the report?

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Data Migration


Looking outside of the reporting world, how about a data migration project that involves the consolidation of two different companies’ data assets?  As you sit down and map common data elements during a data migration project, what a great asset to be able to capture the common understanding of that data as standardized business terminology.  Then, link the agreed upon definition back to the disparate data sources while maintaining associations to each company’s unique lingo through synonyms and keywords (see Metapedia Categorization, Association and Custom Attributes) to make searching more efficient for both entities.

Information Governance


Some organizations have used Metapedia to capture additional information about their quality rules, documenting a more robust rule definition and business impact in a manner that is easily accessible by rule owners.  Check out the following example presented during a recent ASUG presentation.

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Beyond Business Terms to Business Concepts


Metapedia is not just for capturing the definition and categorization of words and phrases. Metapedia can be extended to meet the needs of almost any Business Concept.  For example, business measure and metrics can be managed in Information Steward Metapedia leveraging custom attributes to store unique characteristics such as the actual calculation equation, the business process where used and the system of record the calculation is derived from.  Think about measures such as “Quarterly Sales Growth” and “Operating Income by Division” as well as metrics such as “On-time Delivery” and “Time-to-Develop” and creating a central repository of not only common definitions of those measures and metrics, but also the attributes that explain how those measure and metrics are calculated.  Then, link those concepts back to the metadata object involved in the calculation as well as the reports that display results.

<Insert Your Use Case Here>

We would love to hear your ideas and use cases for where Metapedia does or could provide value as a central glossary of terms, business content or concepts.

Please share via the comments.

1 Comment
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  • Hey Corrie, thanks for the ideas!  We are working to build out IS Metapedia mostly for a Business Intelligence platform and it’s great to see the other extensions.  How about a post on how you’ve seen the APPROVAL PROCESS iimplemented? 

    THANKS!

    Bruce