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Wells Fargo CDO Charles Thomas Is A Data Diplomat

Thomas took over as chief data officer for Wells Fargo in March, after serving in the same capacity at USAA.

For Charles Thomas, the effective use of data and analytics in banking requires a delicate balancing act.
Charles Thomas, Chief Data Officer, Wells Fargo

Thomas, who was named chief data officer for Wells Fargo in March, says the value of data means different things to different departments and lines of business within the institution. And a CDO, besides being technically proficient, must know how to communicate effectively to these different stakeholders. Someone in the bank concerned with regulatory reporting, he notes, has a different use for data and analytics than someone in new product development, though it is important to both people. Thomas half-jokingly says his title could be called "chief diplomacy officer."

"Within the company, certain things are going to resonate to different people, and people might be working on different business goals, though we all have the same overall vision," he says.

Thomas reports to Kevin Rhein, chief information officer and head of the Technology and Operations Group at Wells Fargo, while the company’s Enterprise Data and Analytics team report to Thomas.

Thomas says it's his job to articulate the value of data to the varied departments inside the bank. And increasingly, it's not just the job of the CDO to do that, but also the entire data and analytics team, he believes.

Read the entire original article on Bank Systems & Technology.

Bryan Yurcan is associate editor for Bank Systems and Technology. He has worked in various editorial capacities for newspapers and magazines for the past 8 years. After beginning his career as a municipal and courts reporter for daily newspapers in upstate New York, Bryan has ... View Full Bio

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