To meet the growing need to manage, share, and create standards for data, the DHS Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) established the position of Chief Data Officer (CDO) in fiscal year 2021 (FY21). The role included the creation of the Chief Data Officer Directorate (CDOD). The newly formed Directorate took on several critical tasks to meet the DHS Mission using best practices and innovation for data and data products across Headquarters (HQ) and its 22 components. This includes evaluating the status of the data maturity assessment, identifying solutions, and supporting evidence-based policymaking decisions.
Critical milestones have been reached by CDO Horton during FY21 including establishing the DHS CDO Council (CDOC) and revising the Data Governance Council charter that was approved and signed by CIO Eric Hysen in April. Through these actions, DHS has met the crucial need for interoperability and information-sharing among DHS components and sets a precedent through creation of updated enterprise data governance, management, and data sharing policy.
Mr. Horton presented the first draft of the DHS Data Maturity Model (DMM) to the CDOC. The CDOD adjudicated the Council’s comments and is currently drafting a second version. The CDO also gained approval for the DHS Evidenced-Based Data Strategy (EDS) that will help successfully accomplish ongoing critically important work in support of the Evidence Act, the DHS Evaluation and the Statistical Official missions. As CDO, Mike Horton says, “Data is the new oil”, and stresses the importance of data quality for big and little data. The work of the CDOD in FY21 has set the path for serving the American people and DHS’ mission like never before.
The CDOD has also enhanced technology to reach greater data-centric excellence through the rollout of DHS-wide enterprise Data Governance Tool. This new tool helps facilitate the use and coordination of data governance and management activities across the Department.
Looking ahead in FY22, the CDOD lead by Mr. Horton team will complete the first enterprise-wide data inventory through the DHS Data Inventory Program. To lay the groundwork for the program, the CDOD works with DHS component CDOs, data stewards, and leaders of the Department’s data domains. The DHS CDOC works collaboratively to make the inventory an enterprise-wide effort that focuses on valuable data products and enhance the individual missions of its complex and components. This coordination of effort will help to gain alignment and resource sharing through each stage of the program, building toward a common, user-friendly data catalog for use across the enterprise.