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Master Data Management: Perspective 2018

From the Desk of Manish Sood, CEO, Reltio Inc.

The MDM market and landscape has gone through multiple changes over the last 10+ years.

As we near the end of 2018, I’d like to thank our customers and partners that have been on the forefront of this revolution:

  1. Reltio’s rapid growth, as evidenced by our transparent publication of our audited revenues via the Inc 5000 & Deloitte awards marks us as one of the fastest growing private companies in the world, and the only MDM vendor on either list.
  2. Our unique Google-like search and LinkedIn-like filtering capabilities for business users further differentiates us from other MDM vendors.
  3. As the only native Cloud MDM vendor our customers and partners reap the benefits of innovation and rapid availability of new functionality for years to come.

Reltio is a 100% customer and partner first company, and we pride ourselves on our transparency and focus to constantly do better. Due to our rapid growth we have received feedback that we need to continue to improve our product capabilities, as well as our interactions with the goal of eliminating friction between us and our customers.

Throughout 2018, we have responded to feedback to improve customer satisfaction. Notably we launched a three prong effort:

    1. Reprioritized engineering resources
      We tasked 95 developers and quality assurance employees to burn down customer problems faster than before, and the team has recommitted to product quality with more robust quality processes.
    2. Increased technical customer support and visibility
      We increased our investment in Customer Support so that we can respond more quickly to issues immediately after they arise. Shortly we will implement a new solution that promises to improve customer support ticket visibility.
    3. Improved direct customer communications
      We continue to conduct quarterly business reviews with customers, and have expanded the scope of these reviews to include additional Reltio executives to surface areas where we can be a better partner.

What are the results of these new initiatives?

I am happy to report early progress in customer satisfaction. In November 2018, we surveyed our customers and 95% stated that they would recommend Reltio to other companies while 100% surveyed stated they intend to renew their Reltio subscriptions. We are not finished, but our re-commitment to customer delight is already yielding dividends.

Summary

I’m happy to see Reltio’s stellar growth and the recognition we’ve received over the course of 2018. A quote from a October 2018 Bloor report appropriately encapsulates our efforts to align with our customer’s vision and goals

“Three years ago we wrote that Reltio was several steps ahead of the market. Based on our latest assessment of their execution metrics related to product, technical and business innovation, and the growing adoption by some of the largest enterprises in the world, the gap may have even widened.”

Bloor Report

Once again, to our customers and partners, thank you for a wonderful 2018. We look forward to working even more closely with you in 2019. For those who are new to Reltio, please give us a call. We will assist you anyway we can to help clarify options and best practices about MDM, your Customer 360 project, or your enterprise digital transformation initiative.

Warm Regards,

Manish Sood, CEO, Reltio Inc.

Reltio Supports Apple CEO Tim Cook’s Clarion Call for Stronger US Customer Data Privacy Laws

Manish Sood, CEO & Founder, Reltio

Apple CEO Tim Cook’s call for a U.S. privacy law, similar to GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), is appropriate and timely. Five years ago this initiative would have been too big of a burden for companies because customer data is siloed throughout organizations in dozens or hundreds of separate systems. But today modern data management solutions that include technologies like machine learning empower organizations to implement data governance and privacy initiatives at scale, and are an essential part of their overall Customer 360 data strategy.

GDPR has irreversibly changed the landscape for single customer view data projects for companies doing business in Europe. And there are lessons we can learn from businesses that have gone before us. Early efforts to comply with data mandates at the application level have come up short. Upholding GDPR principles, as companies have quickly realized, requires an enterprise data layer approach to PII (Personal Identifiable Information).

Virtually all companies have customer data scattered across multiple networks and lines of business — the only way to manage this data sprawl so that customer data privacy compliance is assured is to discover, organize and control all customer data from internal, external and third-party sources. If that sounds like a tall order, the good news is that we at Reltio have already developed and implemented best practices that include the essential ingredients for ensuring customer data privacy for some of the largest global enterprises by:

  • Identifying all systems managing customer data

  • Blending different types of data

  • Understanding data ownership

  • Identifying data shared outside the organization

  • Maintaining data lineage across all customer attributes

  • Managing different types of consent, and their sources

  • Providing customers a way to make data-related requests

  • Deploying processes for required data access, change and deletion

  • Implementing a mechanism in place for timely reporting of a data breach

Whether it’s correlating omni-channel transactions to customer master records and understanding, to determining how each customer is related to other members of a particular household, to whether those disparate household members have consented to their data being used and for what purpose. Maintaining data lineage to data sources and tracking to downstream applications so we know from where a customer profile attribute originated and which applications are using it is critical. This is the power of technology that enterprises already have to ensure customers are protected under the right to be forgotten stipulation. (As an aside, the right to be forgotten is a bit of a misnomer. The regulation actually stipulates that a company is required to retain evidence that they ‘forgot’ a customer. Make sure you pick a vendor who understands these nuances or your efforts may be undermined.)

Under GDPR, individuals are entitled to data erasure, which means that at their request, all traces of their information must be purged, including legacy transaction data that might reside in activity logs. In sum, this mandates a comprehensive customer profile with a 360-degree view that can accommodate data-change requests and the ability to generate privacy compliance reports fast.

Organizing data with a modern data management platform for growth strategies like new revenue models, improved customer experience, or other initiatives results in clean, reliable data with built-in customer data privacy compliance.

A comprehensive customer-centric data management strategy that delivers data privacy capabilities is built on four pillars:

  • Consolidated profiles: Organizations need the ability to collate all data from internal, external, third-party and social sources. At the same time, they must have the power to trace and maintain data lineage across all attributes. This sweeping level of visibility is invaluable in the event of a data breach.

  • Managing relationships: Graph technologies play a unique role here — they offer a deeper and more accessible understanding of relationships between stores, locations, channels and types of consent. It also helps to trace the adult consent for capturing the data of a minor.

  • Data change requests: This is a critical requirement for GDPR compliance, and companies need to step up. Built-in workflows in the systems used should accommodate all customer data change requests, deletion requests, review requests and more.

  • Data as a Service with traceability: Drawing from third-party sources is a major benefit, but GDPR compliance requires tracking which attributes came from where.

Those that view a U.S. privacy law as a regulatory burden rather than an opportunity have not yet internalized what it means to be a customer-driven company. Your customers’ privacy is already table stakes today and is part of your responsibility as you serve them. Compliance towards protecting customers’ privacy is a journey not a destination – get the right platform in place today so you can meet any regulation or concern that they might have. You’ll find that it will improve your brand, and customer loyalty, and that’s just good business.

I’m proud that Reltio has been a pioneer in empathizing, understanding, anticipating and embracing customer privacy concerns, and that we’ve embedded product capabilities into our Reltio Customer 360 solution. I completely agree with Tim Cook’s call for a similar U.S Privacy law and as Reltio customers can attest they are already ahead of the game, with Reltio governing their sensitive customer data at scale throughout their organization using master data management, graph, and machine learning technologies.

Why Reltio is All-in on Salesforce Customer 360, and the Adobe, Microsoft, SAP Open Data Initiative

Manish Sood, CEO & Founder, Reltio

Last week we saw some exciting announcements on the subject of Customer 360 and customer engagement. First Adobe, Microsoft, SAP and announced a new partnership: the Open Data Initiative, the intention to create a single data model for consumer data that is then portable between platforms. Then Salesforce announced Customer 360 at Dreamforce 18, to help brands identify who their customers are and how they previously interacted with them. The single customer 360 ID will enable companies to access customer information through Salesforce’s various applications including Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Marketing Cloud, and Commerce Cloud.

The announcement is great news for the industry, and I’m excited to share today that Reltio will be supporting both initiatives. This means that our customers, who are already in production using Reltio Cloud for Customer 360, as well as any future customers and partners, will be able to use Reltio to take full advantage as both initiatives evolve while benefiting from significant additional capabilities.

Standardizing on a common data model, and having a single Customer 360 ID is important, but such efforts have historically been limiting. Common IDs and tight coupling of apps can solve some immediate problems, could provide a quick fix for small organizations but in the long run, can create new islands of data that can create challenges for larger enterprises. Reltio will help both initiatives by continuously unifying and organizing all data within their respective models while making it universally accessible for collaboration and consumption across the enterprise. Our philosophy has always been that standalone customer profile data reconciliation is insufficient without the benefit of understanding relationships across more than just the customer domain. Unlocking the value in relationships across multiple domains such as customers, households, stores, locations, products, parts, suppliers is essential to a true Customer 360, and Reltio delivers this at an enterprise scale.

The Open Data Initiative announcement mentions a data model with over 50 different open source schemas stored in a data lake. These schemas require companies to stitch together the relationships across attributes, schemas, and profiles. Reltio helps this effort through logical metadata that combines all 50+ schemas into one unified canonical model and view of the customer data while ensuring continuous data quality that prevents a traditional data lake from turning into a data swamp.

We started Reltio on the idea that customer data will always be distributed across dozens of application sources with different formats; that companies will keep on adding new sources; that understanding relationships across all data types, not just customer profiles are important; that agility is key, and that future-proofing from changes in technology investments is critical. It’s the reason why we adopted a multi-cloud, multi-model data storage architecture, rather than an arguably easier approach of committing to a single NoSQL, RDBMS, or a graph database. For over seven years, we’ve been delivering on the promise of the complete customer 360-view, through a foundation of trusted, reliable data, powered by open, next-generation modern Master Data management (MDM). We’ve delivered this by not just creating a better MDM in the cloud, but creating a true 360-view that includes master data, relationships across all data entities and correlating omnichannel interactions, transactions. But we didn’t stop there. We architected a platform that brings together analytical insight and operational execution using advanced analytics and machine learning to continuously correlate insight, action, and outcomes in a closed-loop, to extract the maximum business value out of data.

Our customers – which include eight of the 10 largest life science companies, two of the top 10 cosmetics companies in the world, a global hotel and hospitality group, a U.S.-based healthcare insurer, one of the largest U.S.-based pet retailers, one of the largest mortgage providers – rely on Reltio for their digital transformation and customer engagement initiatives. From globally harmonizing customer 360-views across 140+ countries to bring together customer data from hundreds of millions of organizations, to real-time personalization, marketing segmentation of millions of consumers, Reltio continues to deliver on the promise of Customer 360.

Speed, performance, and scalability are key. Over 4.3 billion mission critical master profiles, representing well over 1 Petabyte of storage under management in Reltio Cloud, is being accessed by business teams globally to the tune of over 85 million real-time API calls per day. As these numbers are growing by the second, our multi-cloud platform supported on both AWS and GCP provides the elastic and scalable horsepower to meet demanding workloads, and the aggressive growth objectives of global enterprises. They look to their “Reltioed” data as the trusted source for their analytics and machine learning (ML) initiatives, compliance requirements such as GDPR, and next-generation customer engagement and experiences.

Reltio partners, including Salesforce, Mulesoft, IQVIA, AWS, GCP, Accenture, Cognizant, Wipro, ZS Associates, and Dun & Bradstreet, have all been part of successful Reltio for Customer 360 deployments, which bring together data across applications and sources in multiple Salesforce, Adobe, Microsoft, and SAP environments.

These are exciting times for enterprises looking to transform themselves and leapfrog the competition. But it’s not easy, with a shifting landscape of technology choices, continuously evolving regulations such as GDPR, CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act), and the need to operate at scale most cost-effectively. To companies considering how the Salesforce and Open Data Initiative announcements might impact their plans, please reach out to us to learn more about our support of both initiatives, and how we can get you on a path to future-proofed Customer 360 in a matter of weeks. To our current customers who have placed their faith, and most importantly their critical customer data assets into Reltio, I’d like to say thank you, and assure you that the best is yet to come.