Data is important. In many cases it’s the lifeblood of modern organisations, regardless of whether they’re small local companies or large multinationals.
While management of this information may have been a non-issue in the past, significant growth is starting to change this. In fact, Oracle has found that organisations are now producing more data than ever before, and research from Telsyte has noted that 70 per cent of Australian organisations with 200 employees or more will become data-driven come 2019.
Importantly, the Oracle report stated that this data is also becoming fragmented and inconsistent.
“Despite tremendous advancements at the application layer, nearly all IT initiatives succeed or fail based on the quality and consistency of the underlying data,” Oracle’s David Baum noted.
While this sounds like an issue businesses will struggle with, there’s a solution.
Utilising a better management approach
Data becoming fragmented and inconsistent is perhaps the biggest issue that businesses face, ranking highly alongside other factors like security. Master Data Management (also known as MDM) is an approach that can help to rectify data management issues.
MDM isn’t a difficult concept to grasp – it’s basically a technology-enabled approach to data management. In turn, companies can use MDM to uncover the “Source of Truth” for the data of each customer. Let’s take a closer look.
In nearly every business, there will be customer data across the organisation, in many different silos. For example, a company will have separate records for the same customer in a number of departments. This makes it difficult to find the most up-to-date or correct information.
MDM changes this by linking and synchronising the data through a master record, while keeping the data in the same location. This is consistent across the business, so when the information of a particular customer needs to be viewed or changed, there’s no risk of viewing older data.
Mark A. Smith from Ventana Research explained that approaches such as MDM are something businesses need to be utilising.
“Key initiatives such as Master Data Management, data virtualisation, data quality, data integration and data governance are employed by just a fraction of organisations that should be mastering the science of information management.”
With data playing an increasingly important role in the operations of a business, it’s likely that approaches such as MDM will grow in turn. Of course, as is usually the case, businesses that take advantage of more capable management approaches early on will find control easier.
Understanding the effectiveness of MDM
A single view of customer data isn’t the sole benefit of this approach, companies utilising MDM will also find numerous other advantages following utilisation.
Complete data management: As it’s been noted above, rarely do companies have a complete overview of customer records. This makes it difficult to maintain a relationship, as incorrect data will constantly prove to be a roadblock. MDM means every department will have a complete overview of the right data.
De-duplication: Businesses will often find that it’s necessary to locate customer data in a short space of time, especially in customer-facing situations. It’s easy to see how this can become complicated when multiple versions of the same information exist across the enterprise. Based on pre-defined criteria (that the business determines), MDM can eliminate duplicates of this data.
Better managing data isn’t a task that can be accomplished overnight, but the right solutions can certainly speed along the process. With information so critical for the running business, companies need access to the correct data. Speak to Mastersoft today to find out more about MDM.