At Data Modeling Zone Asia Pacific 2o19, we had a roundtable discussion on rebranding the “data modeler” role. We’ve had discussions on this topic over this past year, and some have made it into blog posts on stevehoberman.com. I feel that the term “data modeler” minimizes what we do. We do so much more than just data modeling, such as enabling the business to understand themselves in a very precise way, creating a great communication tool, facilitating the transition from requirements to application, etc.
Someone during this roundtable discussion came out with a very interesting question: Why is our role tied to a “means” and not an “end”? That is, a data model is a means to an end, where that end might be better communication or a more robust application. He brought up an analogy that we don’t call carpenters “nail bangers”. Banging in nails is a means to an end of the carpenter building or repairing a wooden structure.
A good IT name, for example, is a Security Specialist, why helps keep an organization secure from outside digital attacks. (The end and not the means.) What is a similarly good name for us that reflects the ends and not the means?