Getting Started with the Stemma Business Glossary

Estimated reading: 3 minutes

What Is a Business Glossary?

A business glossary is a repository of business terms and their definitions that an organization uses to ensure the same definitions are used company-wide when analyzing data. It allows data analysts, business users, and data engineers to agree on the definition of real-world terms, and how those are represented in the data; and serves as the source of truth for those definitions

Used this way, the glossary produces a common vocabulary that everyone in the organization uses. This common vocabulary is a key component of data governance, ensuring that everyone means the same thing when they use the same term. For instance, one department may define the term “customer” as a company while another department may use the term to refer to an individual. A business glossary prevents such discrepancies.

In short, a business glossary provides canonical definitions of common terms and fosters shared understanding of those terms throughout the organization.

The Stemma Business Glossary

This first version of the Stemma Business Glossary allows you to define and group terms that are used in your organization and assign owners to those terms so that the definitions remain consistent and up to date. These terms can be specific to the data sources in the Stemma catalog, or they can be terms that are used throughout the organization or any part of it.

You can also link those terms to table columns in the Stemma catalog.

In future, you will also be able to link terms to other resources in the catalog, and to queries and search results.

Using the Glossary

Populating the Glossary

To begin populating the glossary, proceed as follows.

From the navigation bar of the Stemma UI, choose Glossary:

Choose + New Group or + New Term.

In the dialog window, add a name and a definition or description.

You can use Markdown syntax for the description or definition.
– A group is a collection of related terms. For example, you might want to group terms by department or function– finance, marketing, etc.
– You can add a term to an existing group, or create a new term without assigning it to a group. (You can’t create a group on the fly while adding or editing a term).

– You can add related columns and one or more owners: start typing to find candidates.

When you are finished, click Save.

Updating the Glossary

To update the glossary:

From the navigation bar of the Stemma UI, choose Glossary.

To modify a group, click on the group and then click Edit. You can change the group’s attributes and also add new terms to it.

To modify a term, search for it by name, or click the > next to the group and select the term from the list;. then either:-

  • Click Edit and make your changes to any or all attributes of the term. You can change the group the term belongs to, so long as the new group already exists.


  • Click Delete to remove the term from the glossary.

When you are finished, click Save.