Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Wanted: Information Engineer

CNN Money has release a list of the hottest up and coming jobs. Number 3 is the "information engineer", a new title with a $70K to $120K salary potential. It's not surprising. I would estimate that salary range to be low, as corporations compete for resources to build data governance teams.
If you think about it, information engineering as a career move is relatively outsource-safe. Corporations will have a hard time outsourcing data governance, for the following reasons:

  • Data needs to be secure - with many laws on the books about data security, corporations know that it's hard to maintain security if the data is sent off shore.

  • Accessing data is half the problem - data tends to be locked up in silos, often controlled by someone who doesn't want to give it up, or someone who has left the company. Corporations know they need inside resources to work through the politics and opposition to access to the data.

  • No one knows the ins and outs of the company data like a company employee - an outsourced data quality won't understand the industry-specific and corporate-specific data challenges and how to solve them. It'll be tough enough for someone who has complete access to the business users of the data.

Let’s face it, as companies grow and compete, we’re not going to run out of data that needs to be cleansed, standardized, and matched. Building your career around data governance may just be the best move you can make.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are my own and don't necessarily reflect the opinion of my employer. The material written here is copyright (c) 2010 by Steve Sarsfield. To request permission to reuse, please e-mail me.