What is Master Data?
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What is Master Data?

Master data is the core information that defines an organization and its business processes. It includes key data assets essential to the business’s analytics and operation like:

  • Customer data
  • Product data
  • Financial data
  • Supplier data
  • Employee data
  • Site/location data

What is Reference Data?

A related type of data, reference data, is often described as the master of master data. It is a non-volatile, stable and widely-used data that categorizes master data and correlates it with external standards.

What is Master Data Management?

Master Data Management (MDM) is the process of managing master data to maintain consistent, accessible information throughout the organization. It ensures that an organization’s critical data assets are consistently managed and aligned with business objectives

It includes identifying, cleaning, standardizing and consolidating data from multiple disparate sources into a single source of the truth and then sharing them via integration techniques across multiple IT systems. This means that all stakeholders within the organization have access to accurate, up-to-date and consistent information.

Any industry that relies on core data to make decisions can benefit from MDM. This includes:

  • Financial Services
  • Insurance
  • Life Science
  • Healthcare
  • Retail
  • High Tech
  • Travel and Hospitality
  • Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG)
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Core Components & Disciplines of MDM

A solid MDM foundation is built on six key concepts:

  • Governance: Ensure that data is accurate, consistent and compliant with organizational standards and policies.
  • Analytics: Provide feedback on the performance of MDM processes and allow for continuous improvement.
  • Organization: Assign roles and responsibilities for data management and stewardship among business, IT and external users.
  • Policy: Define the policies and procedures that govern how data is accessed, used and protected.
  • Process: Set clear guidelines for processes and steps to manage data at every stage.
  • Technology: Use the right tools to support MDM processes such as data warehouses, data quality management tools, and ETL systems.
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