Relocate to the U.S. as a Data Steward - LegitBio
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What comes to mind when you hear of a data steward? Data stewards are employees who collect and maintain valuable data for their organizations while protecting their data assets. If you find working with databases, analytics, and big data interesting, you may relocate to the U.S. as a data steward!

 

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It is essential in any data-driven organization, and a steward must ensure that the data remains helpful in the company and meets its business objectives. However, there’s a big misconception that being a data steward is a definite position. In actuality, it is a role that anyone who understands data management can take up and relocate to the U.S. as a data steward.

 

Becoming a data steward implies that the data must always be accessible, consistent, usable, and secure. Also, you are expected to monitor the entire data lifecycle, from collecting, categorizing, using, storing, and archiving to deleting data. In this article, we’ll focus on the specific responsibilities of data stewards, their skills, and how you can relocate to the U.S. as a data steward.

 

What is a Data Steward?

The key responsibility of a data steward is to ensure data quality for an organization. Other duties may include documenting data and metadata and deciding processes for data interpretation. They often work closely with different data analysts and managers to ensure that data is uniform for internal and external users.

 

To become a data steward in the U.S., you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in statistics, computer science, or a closely related field. In addition, you must obtain several years of valuable related job experience, like in data storage or extraction. Ensure you also have programming expertise and technical writing skills.

 

Types of Data Stewards

1. Domain data stewards: They help maintain data in a particular domain whose ownership is shared across various departments in an enterprise. Example: Customer data steward.

 

2. Business data stewards: They maintain all the relevant data for a particular business operation—for example, Marketing data stewards.

 

3. System data stewards: These professionals help monitor the data in I.T. systems. Meanwhile, their focus on how data interacts with other enterprise applications is a significant distinction. While the rest focus on human interactions with the data. Example: Enterprise data warehouse architect.

 

What Does a Data Steward Do? 

Data stewards are the gatekeepers of an organization’s data. They act as a reference point for anyone who needs access to the data, has questions about it, or wants to store some of it. Furthermore, they are asked about the relevance of particular data, how to improve the quality of the data, where it can be stored, and how long it needs to stay stored. 

 

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More Responsibilities of a Data Steward

1. Data cataloging: This involves drafting up an inventory of data assets. As a data steward, you will need to profile and categorize data. It will also be compiled into a data catalog with all the necessary information. 

 

2. Data workflow: Data stewards must ensure that the data flows between stakeholders in a project by clearly dividing the project phases. Also, they maintain ease by offering a variety of self-serving tools, such as Power B.I., to help gain essential insights, among other things. In short, data stewards ensure that data is easily and more accessible for everyone in an organization.

 

3. Data monitoring: Based on the numerous daily interactions in an organization, there’s always room for fraud and other malicious forces to exploit an organization’s data. However, an effective data monitoring strategy can significantly reduce this threat. The data lifecycle is monitored – from data creation to storage in the archives.

 

4. Data advocacy: Data stewards help promote intelligent data usage along with collaboration and teamwork. This is done by constantly drafting better and more effective policies and updating procedures.

 

5. Data security: Data stewards must regulate access to confidential data. They must also implement measures against tampering with data or stealing it. In addition, they often use different strategies and policies to detect and mitigate theft or exposure of confidential data. These include basic data protection measures like data lifecycle management and encryption.

 

Skills to Become a Data Steward

1. Data strategy: As a data steward, a considerable part involves drafting and implementing policies for effective Data Management. They also establish how an organization deals with collecting and processing data.

 

In addition, they are entrusted with responsibilities like making uniform policies on collecting, recording, and sharing data. This ensures homogeneity in how employees across the organization deal with data.

 

2. Communication skills: Data stewards often help train other employees of the organization on their policies through training events or memos. With excellent communication skills, you’ll be able to speak at training events or draft policies that are easy to understand.

 

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3. Collaborative skills: Since data stewards oversee data collection and maintenance, they will need to foster healthy collaboration. They draft and implement operational policies and maintain a glossary of relevant terminology.

 

This is only possible if there’s lots of departmental knowledge and collaborative skills. Meanwhile, departmental knowledge is also a crucial skill for a data steward. With it, gathering relevant and beneficial data would be more accessible.

 

4. Knowledge of regulations: Compliance regulations often ensure that data is well organized, maintained, and kept safe from theft or misuse. Solid knowledge of compliance regulations like G.D.P.R. and C.C.P.A. makes data stewards ensure that their data is protected and can avoid penalties. Data laws are strict and fixed; they can have serious legal repercussions if you don’t follow them.

 

5. Knowledge of databases: It is essential to know about constructing and using databases to analyze information and locate errors or malicious data. As a steward, you must understand how to manage current Data Management platforms.

 

6. Problem-solving skills: Holding onto data integrity and locating and rectifying errors are fundamental skills for any data steward. Since the two need the individual to be an expert problem solver. These skills also come in handy in policy drafting, which is an integral responsibility.

 

How to Relocate to the U.S. as a Data Steward

Applications for EB3 visas involve multiple steps that affect both the employer and the foreign employee.

File form DS-261: This is an online form that a data steward must fill in each section and submit. The form will be a visa application to the U.S. Embassy in your country of residence. After submitting this form, you will receive a confirmation page with supporting documents to send to the NVC.

Complete medical examination and vaccination

To relocate to the U.S. as a data steward, you must meet the health requirements too. You must go through the NVC package and visit a licensed doctor to complete the necessary documents and checkups. If you do not have all the vaccines, then you will also need to take them.

Compile the EB3 visa supporting documents file.

After the NVC approves your Form DS-261, you must send the supporting documents for your case. The documents required for an EB3 visa application are listed below:

  • Valid international passport with six months validity after your intended departure to the U.S.
  • Employment offer from the U.S. employer
  • The approved labor certification
  • The approved petition
  • U.S. sponsorship letter for your visa employment
  • Your DS-261 confirmation page
  • Your signed medical and vaccine documents
  • Two passport photographs 
  • Academic achievements (diplomas and certificates)
  • Your CV or resume
  • Court and criminal records
  • Sometimes, the NVC may need additional supporting documents, so follow instructions carefully.

Attend the visa interview.

After reviewing your documents, you will schedule an interview at the U.S. Embassy. You must attend the visa interview at that scheduled time. The U.S. official will review your background and documents and decide whether you should be given an EB3 visa.

Receive the NVC package and travel to the U.S.

If your visa is approved, NVC will send you a package. You cannot open this package under any circumstances. When you travel to the U.S., you must give it to an immigration official at the port of entry. They are the only ones who can open it and decide whether you can enter the U.S.

 

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Data Steward Working Environment 

Generally, data stewards work at organizations in industries that use large amounts of data, like universities, government agencies, hospitals, and educational institutions. Using computers, they can complete most of their daily duties.

 

They also need to communicate with colleagues regularly to establish data procedures. However, some stewards work remotely, while others work in physical offices. Many follow a regular 40-hour work schedule, but some may work extra hours to address data discrepancies.

 

Data Steward Salary 

The national average salary for a data steward is $59,400 annually. However, your expected salary may differ based on the type of industry that you’re in, your accommodations, and your experience level. Data stewards with more experience maintaining databases and protecting data can expect to earn more than stewards with little/no experience.

 

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Conclusion

To successfully transition into a data stewardship role in the U.S., the journey requires you to keep learning and actively engaging with the field of data governance. Therefore, to remain competitive, it’s important to build a solid foundation in data management principles, stay updated on industry trends, and constantly seek opportunities for first-hand experience in data projects.