Why do we need master data management? For most businesses, poor data quality and organization is the biggest barrier to digital innovation.
Becoming truly data-driven requires continually resolving issues with disconnected, disjointed, and inaccurate data. Staying ahead in the experience economy requires continually using new data sources to hyper-personalized your customer interactions. Competing and thriving in your market segment requires real-time, connected data that gives your business processes agility.
Data creates competitive advantages from every angle in the digitized world—if you know how to use it. The key to using data for business value is, of course, managing it. Master data management and its ability to provide connected, insight-ready data in real-time lay the foundation for creating business value through data. Advanced MDM platforms help your business realize these benefits efficiently and also powers your business operations to boost growth through digital innovation.
3 Benefits of Master Data Management for Your Business Data
Modern, connected MDM should strive for three goals:
- Allow you to use more data
- Make data clear and consistent for all users
- Find hidden connections in the data
Limitations in first-generation MDM systems prevented many businesses from including these goals in their MDM strategies, but their benefits are clear. The more data your organization can use, the more insights you’ll reap. Better quality and holistic data in more hands mean better business decisions. Market growth depends on finding unanticipated customer relationships and preferences.
Modern MDM platforms enable all three using advanced technology in a few key areas:
Eliminating redundancy is a basic tenant of any master data management strategy that often inhibits sourcing new data sets. An MDM platform with machine learning can find and resolve matches at a much larger scale than a legacy master data management system. AI suggests matches certified by data stewards or business users improve the results over time and eventually can be automated. The result: Clean and Consistent Data.
Streamlining business processes requires integrating customer, organization, employee, asset, location, and product data. This is key in order to stay ahead of emerging master data management trends. A modern MDM platform connects data across business silos and suggests relationships and insights that users could not have found based solely on data from their own department or business function. This allows you to access your data from a single source, draw key business insights, and power business operations. It also has the ability to incorporate external or third-party sources to give rich context to customer profiles and supply chain visibility.
The data is only as good as your team’s ability to read and understand it. The modern MDM platform uses consumer-grade interfaces and connected graph technology to easily visualize connections and many-to-many relationships across data categories. For example, you can easily toggle between customer and product views and suggests new relationships and connections without users first having to conceptualize them.
Benefits of Master Data Management for Your Business
The real benefits of MDM lie in what it can do for your business goals and strategies. Clean, organized data from many sources in many hands means quantifiable business decisions in every area of your organization. Some of the key MDM business benefits include:
1. Business Agility
COVID-19 has taught us that the ability to quickly adapt to market conditions is key to staying ahead of the competition. Reliable, connected data improves visibility and control so you can see the exact source of disruptions on your supply chain or drill down to customer segments in specific locations in real-time. Understanding real-time operations at scale is the only way to handle risks and deal with threats before they grow, take advantage of opportunities before they disappear, and incorporate innovations before they’re commonplace.
2. Using Digital Innovation
IoT data could entirely transform supply chain management. Unstructured data in chats, phone calls, and videos are the new frontier to customer-centricity. Using either of these digital innovations requires an MDM platform with big data architecture that can capture all the interactions and transactions.
3. Business Process Efficiency
The increasing complexity of master data management that comes with Big Data, unstructured data, and external data sets requires an MDM platform that uses AI. While the upfront costs for MDM platforms can be considerable, in the long term they save time, money, and untold cost of error involved in processing master data manually.
Apart from their own ROI, MDM platforms power business operations and processes with increased information. Holistic and connected data empowers business users with the information they need to improve business process efficacy and efficiency.
4. Using Real-time Insights
Modern MDM platforms allow users to directly access, manage, and interact with the data in real-time. They provide a richer single view of product, customer, and supplier data, so your teams can introduce new business processes or products or target new customer segments faster.
5. Informed Strategic Decision-making
With MDM, leadership becomes less about the instincts and more about data-driven decisions that can be repeated, read, and interpreted by many, which means less risk to your business. Better business decisions come from better data that includes more sources.
Modern MDM platforms accessible across the organization also increase the speed of decision making. Democratizing data lets you empower your teams, so decisions don’t take days or weeks to filter up the corporate food chain. Quantifiable trends and connections also leave less room for debate. Your business decisions have monumental consequences, and MDM is the best way to ensure you’re making informed decisions based on consistent and connected data for the short and long run.
6. Reduced Compliance & Security Risk
The fear of security and compliance risk keeps many organizations from using their critical data to its full capacity. Regulations will only get stricter and hackers more sophisticated, however. Modern MDM makes tracking compliance and backing up records simpler.
7. Using Privacy & Consent
MDM is essential to meeting customer and regulatory expectations. Responding to customer preferences at the speed they expect requires an MDM platform with continuous updating. Adjusting to new privacy regulations also requires MDM agility. That’s why Reltio takes master data management best practices to the next level with Connected Data Platform, giving you a platform that ensures reduced compliance and security risk.
8. Breaking Down Silos
A multi-domain MDM platform brings all your enterprise data together for a single version of the truth, so every function within your business is making decisions based on the same information. What’s more, leaders within business disciplines can see how their outcomes affect other areas of the organization and how other areas affect them.
The benefits of breaking down business silos are legion: improved operational efficiency, decreased time to market, better organizational culture, continuous process improvement, and increased profits. MDM makes the dream of total-cost-of-ownership management reality and can lead to a more insightful MDM strategy.
9. Supply Chain Visibility
An advanced MDM platform allows you to unite external data from your vendors and suppliers to visualize your end-to-end supply chain without having to sacrifice the security and autonomy of your data. You can find supplier disruptions and where the supply chain is constrained early so you can respond even during COVID-19 level disruptions.
Better supply chain visualization simplifies product recalls. MDM can also cut SKU proliferation in two ways:
- No double-labeling of the same product with different numbers
- Connected customer data helps marketing hone in on only the new products the data shows customers want
10. Customer Centricity
Winning in the experience economy requires a new level of customer-centricity in your business. Customers expect businesses now to retain information about their order history and preferences across channels and respond in real-time with hyper-personalized marketing and support. MDM supports customer-centricity by helping you:
- Execute customer loyalty programs
- Discover unobvious relationships between data and gain insights into customers’ wants and needs
- Spend less money on ineffective new product trials
- Gain a full 360 connected customer view and communication history
MDM makes returns, purchases, order tracking and support tracking easier—all the major experience headaches that can alienate customers. Integrating external data sources from social media and business partners gives you richer customer profiles in a single view and more accurate segmentation for precise, profitable marketing campaigns.
11. Using Hyper-personalization
MDM allows marketing teams to target specific segments that might not have emerged without connections from multiple data sources. An MDM platform that provides data integration for unstructured data from social media or helps chats gives you an entirely new level of hyper-personalized, connected customer 360 views.
12. Discover New Markets
Taking a blue ocean strategy to venture into untapped markets requires thinking outside the box. MDM can bring your teams new data from different areas of the business to provide a new perspective. An innovative MDM solution with machine learning suggests relationships between products, customers, vendors, and locations that aren’t inherently obvious or logical.
MDM helps you identify top-performing customers and market segments. You can easily see which products have the best margins and what products perform best in what markets and anticipate how certain customer segments will act.
Maximize the Benefits With Reltio’s Innovative MDM Platform
The benefits of master data management touch every corner of your business, but only if your master data management capabilities allow multiple sources to aggregate together seamlessly in real-time. Reltio built Connected Customer 360 to make MDM simple and intuitive and anticipate the next wave of competitive business needs. Our platform was purpose-built to be multi-domain, with a user interface that democratizes data. We believe in the power of data and the right MDM platform’s ability to power your business transformation.
Ready to elevate your master data management strategy? Empower your business with Reltio's Connected Customer 360.