MDM Features

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Master Data can be organised at different levels. It's unlikely that a single MDM product will solve the enterprise's issues.

  • MDM has the objective of providing processes for collecting, aggregating, matching, consolidating, quality-assuring, persisting and distributing such data throughout an organisation to ensure consistency and control in the ongoing maintenance and applied use of this data.
  • Traditionally, Master Data could be code tables, a "master file", reference data, dimensions. Master Data (when established) should feed downstream data systems like Data Marts, data applications etc...
  • MDM is typically more important in larger organisations. The bigger the organisation, the more important the discipline of MDM is, because a bigger organisation means that there are more disparate systems within the company, and the difficulty on providing a single source of truth, as well as the benefit of having master data, grows with each additional data source.
  • A particularly big challenge to maintaining master data occurs when there is a Corporate Merger/Acquisition. Each of the organisations will have its own master data, and how to merge the two sets of data will be challenging. Let's take a look at the customer files:
    • The two companies will likely have different unique identifiers for each customer. Addresses and phone numbers may not match. One may have a person's maiden name and the other the current last name. One may have a nickname (such as "Bill") and the other may have the full name (such as "William").
    • All these contribute to the difficulty in creating and maintain in a single set of master data.

At the heart of the master data management program is the definition of the master data. Therefore, it is essential that we identify who is responsible for defining and enforcing the definition. Due to the importance of master data, a dedicated person or team should be appointed. At the minimum, a data steward should be identified. The responsible party can also be a group -- such as a data governance committee or a data governance council.

The 3 levels of MDM design are:


MDM Solution Design