Metadata Registries Aid Data Quality

Data that describes data is called metadata. Registry is a store of records or information describing objects or entities of interest. A Metadata Registry is a place where metadata-information about your data- is stored. The Metadata Registry stores all useful descriptions of your data. If you go to a library with thousands of books, there would be a compact list with Title, Author and Subject of the book-this is a simple example of metadata. If you have other information on publisher, critique of the book, rank by circulating levels, languages available in, other books by the same author etc. and store this information in a centralized register or a database, this would be a metadata registry.

Metadata Registries Uses


A department within an organization which does not have a formal quality program and is planning to introduce a program based on say the ISO quality standard may use Metadata registry entries from another department who are already using the ISO quality standard. For unique definitions of data elements specific to the department, metadata can be created and stored in the Metadata Registry in a way that all stakeholders understand. This way, standardization is achieved and effort saved by not having to create new metadata about similar data elements.

Classification & Organization of data

With the metadata registry’s standardized and centralized nomenclature, other departments can create their own schema, without having to redefine each data element. A data registry also provides information on how the data elements are interrelated in the existing schema, offering some insights into how the new schema could reuse some of the existing data relationships and classification terminology, reducing the time and effort involved in creating new schema.

Machine Processable Schema

Data cleaning of a large database may involve automated procedures executed by data management software. Further, marketing software automate email and web marketing activities. Standardization, data relationship definitions and data size/format information stored by metadata registries in a standardized machine processable format, allow software to automate and execute complex data based tasks, reducing costs and improving consistency of transactions.

Data Conversion

Portability and data interoperability between systems and software is a major concern for any business or enterprise. A comprehensive and industry standard metadata registry can be a strong basis for conversion of data records from one format to another, using efficient automated techniques. Portability automation is aided by metadata registry standards. The ISO 11179 is an instance of a metadata registry standard.  

Metadata registries designed and maintained correctly facilitate data clarity and ease of data access for users, making the data much more valuable and usable than its raw form. The initial investment of time and incremental maintenance efforts building a metadata registry pay multiple dividends over time.

Data Management companies ensure clarity around your data through easy to use and maintain metadata registries. Metadata-explanation of what your data is all about and how it is related to other data, enhances the value of everyday data that you capture.

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