What is Master Data Management?

Everything you need to know about master data management and how it brings data together to create a single, accurate record of the truth across the enterprise.

Master data management fuels­­­ your
business with better data

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Master data management (MDM) is the core process used to manage, centralize, organize, categorize, localize, synchronize and enrich master data according to the business rules of the sales, marketing and operational strategies of your company.

Master data can take the form of product, customer, supplier, location and asset information, in addition to any information sources that drive your business.

The efficient management of master data in a central repository gives you a single authoritative view of information and eliminates costly inefficiencies caused by data silos.

It supports your business initiatives through identification, linking and syndication of information across products, customers, stores/locations, employees, suppliers, digital assets and more.

Master your data using an MDM platform to support your enterprise data strategy

What is Master Data Management? And Why You Need It Discover the value of master data management to deliver better business outcomes. Get the White Paper
The Complete A-Z of Master Data Management In this ebook, we give you an overview and a definition of the most common MDM terms and abbreviations. Get the eBook
Building the Business Case This is your ultimate guide to how to ‘sell’ master data management to the organization. Get the eBook
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Master data management benefits

MDM connects, masters and shares data from all your systems, including ERP, CRM, ecommerce and more. It allows you to create a 360° view of your information. You’ll learn everything from the buying history of your customers to product availability and supplier interaction.

MDM allows you to:


  • Focus your product, service and business efforts on the activities that increase sales.
  • Deliver a highly personal service and engagement experience.
  • De-prioritize unprofitable activities that drain time and resources.
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Underpinning these benefits, master data management enables you to:

stibo-asset_eliminate-data-silos@2x Eliminate silos

of master data that exist in different departments or business

Improve-Efficiencty@2x Improve operational efficiency

by aligning organizational and operational data

Increased-Collaboration@2x-2 Increase collaboration

between internal and external groups

Customer-Centricity@2x-2 Enhance the customer experience

by using insights to drive business performance

resources@2x Save resources

by automating and streamlining essential data processes

stibo-asset_reduce-risk@2x Reduce risks

associated with regulatory compliance such as GDPR

How to approach master data management

Whether you’re considering adopting an MDM solution, you’re implementing but don’t know where to start or if you have some MDM capabilities but feel that they need to be updated, these three steps will help you get started.

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A World without Master Data Management2
Video A world without MDM A world without MDM is a place where the things your customers order are not always what they get, where you’re often bombarded with the same offer multiple times and where sometimes there’s a mix up with your products.
Master data management and the cost of poor quality data

As your business grows, your IT landscape becomes more complicated. Acquisitions, expansion into new markets and new countries can result in your business running multiple systems, applications and technologies. This fragmented environment creates significant data management difficulties.

MDM provides an organizing approach to data management and increases the value of your analytics and the quality of your data. It connects information, people and processes to help you meet business objectives and improves the quality of data.

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What is the role of master data management?

The role of master data management is to remove silos and manage, share and correct your data from one place. The results enable you to:

10 signs you have a data problem Cloud storage, regulatory compliance, security breaches – the list of factors that have driven companies to make changes to the way they manage data in recent years is endless. Combine this with the dramatic increase in the data organizations now acquire and seek to manage, and you end up with a complex and challenging situation. Read the blog
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Master data management glossary

PIM, DAM, CDO, data enrichment, matching and linking ... Not quite sure what all those abbreviations and terms mean and how they relate to master data management? Get the answers with this A-Z MDM guide.

Read the complete A-Z glossary of MDM
A to z of MDM

Master data types

Master data is a single source of common data, but there are many distinct data types. They are often duplicated across the business and stored with little agreement on standard definition.

Customer data Perhaps the most common type of master data is customer records, which can include names, email, postal addresses and customer preferences. Customer data fuels the creation of amazing experiences, which have the potential to increase customer satisfaction by as much as 20%. Product data Description, cost, unit of measure and image are examples of product data that help your customers make informed buying decisions. Studies show that giving people better product information boosts online sales from 17% to 56%. Supplier data You can view elements of your entire supply chain using an integrated, accurate and up-to-date view. This results in greater control, closer relationships and an improved supplier and product onboarding process. Party data Mastering party data allows you to create the relationships that are vital to gain an accurate understanding of the value of each of your records. It gives you a significant competitive advantage. Location data Location information is essential for analyzing customer purchasing habits based on geography. You gain a deeper understanding of product, store and competitor locations, as well as improving the management of your chain of physical stores. Reference data Keeping reference data fields such as country, currency and conversions up-to-date is critical to making key business decisions, understanding their impact on the performance of your systems and meeting regulatory compliance.

How master data management helps you

MDM extends the value of your IT investments because it integrates and scales with your other systems. MDM covers different data domains relevant to all of your business challenges.
 


Customer master data management (CMDM)

You can fuel your digital business and IT initiatives—and deliver experiences customers crave—by gaining a single, unified view of customers using CMDM. Transforming how businesses achieve customer understanding, CMDM connects, cleanses and enhances customer data. It gives enterprises the foundation they need to boost their business through segmentation and personalized customer experiences. In addition, they can more easily adhere to governance and regulatory compliance. 

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The business value of CMDM As a customer-focused component of MDM, CMDM is used to drive new business opportunities by enabling you to identify, consolidate and link your customer data across your business. Read the blog
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Product master data management

Product master data management (PMDM) brings all your product data into one place to create a single approved source of truth. This enables you to acquire, manage and share product data across your enterprise to feed consistent, accurate and timely information to systems, people and trading partners.

Marks & Spencer This British retailer had 585 different product attributes and eight international websites using five languages. Having implemented PMDM, Marks & Spencer was able to use rules to control their data, tailor their product range for each country and manage product text translations automatically.

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Master data management capabilities

MDM delivers core data capabilities that connect and provide information to every point in the business. You can truly transform your business strategies because you have high-quality data dispersed enterprise-wide.

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How to achieve master data management success

The more you understand the complexities of your business challenges, the more deliberately you can begin to choose your master data management solution. To help, here are seven steps to making your MDM project a success.

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Master data management key considerations

After you’ve built your strategy, but before you embark on your MDM journey, take into account four considerations:


Build the business case
Since there are many stakeholders and factors involved in any large-scale IT project, the below guide will help you build the business case.


Align with your mission
Consider how your plan aligns with the purpose of your business. You should also develop your roadmap to highlight the obstacles you need to overcome.


Choose the right approach
Consider the available delivery options. For example, choose either a linear or an agile approach.


Quantify business value
Consider what success looks like to you and establish clear, attainable metrics to track and measure results.

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Guide to building your business case for MDM

Even if you are certain that investing in a master data management solution is the best way for your organization to succeed with your data, you will still have to 'sell it' to the rest of the decision makers. Since there are many stakeholders and considerations involved, we have developed a guide that you can follow to build the business case.



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Master data management trends

Working towards the below trends will help you improve the level of control and insight you have over your master data, allowing you to serve customers better, improve business output, remain compliant and increase revenue.

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