By Laura Fontan
Laura is a sales engineer that helps organizations instil trust in data. Prior to Collibra, she worked as presales at Denodo, where she specialized in enterprise data integration.
In today’s world where data-driven organizations hold a competitive edge, it is a smart career move to become a data expert. But you may be thinking – there are so many aspects to data. Where should I start? Let me offer a suggestion: Data Intelligence.
The Collibra Ranger Certification is the most comprehensive credential offered in the field of Data Intelligence and is awarded to individuals who have deep experience in driving the operationalization and adoption of Collibra in organizations. Through the certification, one understands the challenges leaders in this space work through and what it takes to be a data-driven company.
Today, we have the pleasure of interviewing Laura Landaluce Álvaro and Nuria Corbalán López, the first certified Collibra Rangers in the country who both currently work at PwC Spain. In partnership with the Women of Collibra Employee Resource Group, we asked these two data governance professionals about their beginnings in the data industry, what it is like to become a Collibra Ranger and what can be done to promote more women in the field.
What is your role at PwC?
Laura: Senior Consultant for the Data Governance practice.
In this role I work on strategic initiatives, such as defining the data governance and the CDO functions for our clients. I also work on operational projects related to data quality, data security and data privacy, data lakes, and the deployment of data governance platforms, such as Collibra.
Nuria: Senior Associate in the Business Security Solutions area.
I have been working for the past few years in designing and implementing data governance, data analytics, master data management and data quality projects. I currently specialize in data governance initiatives.
Why did you choose a career in data and technology?
Laura: I come from a functional and business background, but over time I have acquired skills that have helped me become successful in various positions that relate to technology. With my role in data governance, I use both sets of skills – business and technical. Since data governance is not a purely technical or functional field, I act as a bridge between the two worlds and use both my business and technical skill set in this position.
Nuria: I studied Industrial Engineering at University, but my first real experience with data was right after I finished my degree when I interned in the Business Intelligence department of a financial services institution. In this role, I started to realize that huge volumes of data were being generated in the different business functions, many times in silos, without any collaboration and communication among them, which led to several inefficiencies.
That experience opened my eyes to the importance of data and inspired me to pursue a career in data governance and data management.
What do you enjoy the most about working in the data industry?
Laura: In general, in the Spanish market, the data governance function is still somewhat immature. This gives professionals like me plenty of opportunities to define and implement it from scratch in different sectors such as banking, insurance and telco. Having access to different perspectives is very rewarding, all the rich experiences and knowledge I gather can be applied every time I work on a new project for a new client.
Nuria: I love seeing results. I have been lucky to see the benefits of implementing a data governance framework in several clients: they work with better quality data, they work more efficiently and they make better decisions. I also love seeing how companies are evolving and maturing their data culture.
Why did you become a Collibra Ranger?
Laura: I had previously worked with Collibra, implementing the platform for clients, and had completed all the certifications available in Collibra University. Thanks to the partnership between PwC and Collibra*, I was given the opportunity to apply for the Collibra Ranger Certification and I did it. It requires lots of effort and hours but is very practical; you can think of it as the implementation of a use case for a client.
Nuria: One of my first assignments when I joined PwC was to complete all the available certifications in Collibra University. Very soon after, I got assigned to a project to implement Collibra with a client. My boss told me that I could go for the Collibra Ranger certification due to our partnership with Collibra and I obviously accepted the challenge.
What value did it bring to you as individuals as well as to PwC?
Laura: During the implementation of the use case I learned a lot. Collibra is a platform with lots of capabilities and, as you work with it, you always learn something new; either a new functionality or a better way of implementing something you already knew.
On a personal level, being a Collibra Ranger adds value to my CV. In the context of PwC, having this certification gives confidence to our customers. More and more in Spain, they recognize and appreciate working with certified specialists for their data governance initiatives.
Nuria: I see great value in the certification because it allowed me to put my knowledge and experience to the test and, more importantly, it allowed me to get direct feedback from the experts. Being a Collibra Ranger is very valuable for our clients because it instills confidence. They trust I have deep experience in driving successful implementations and adoption of Collibra.
What’s one tip you have for women just starting their career in the data industry?
Laura: I encourage everyone who likes this space to go for it, even though there is a lack of references, mainly in leadership positions. At the same time, it is very important for all women in the field to recognize each other’s accomplishments and support and lift each other so we become more visible.
Nuria: The data industry is broad and there are several fields we can work on. There is a place and space for everyone, find what is yours based on your skills and goals.
To learn more about becoming a Collibra Ranger and all Collibra role-based certifications please visit Collibra University.
*PwC has been a Strategic Partner of Collibra since 2015. During this time Collibra and PwC consultants have worked together in multiple projects to help organizations get value from data by implementing Collibra Data Intelligence Cloud. PwC has within its workforce more than 170 consultants with a Collibra certification.