Thanks to powerful advances in technology, the business world is evolving in a variety of exciting ways. As a result of recent computer advancements in artificial intelligence, for example, it’s now possible to harness information about your business, its operations, and its customers in dynamic new ways. All of this is made possible thanks to the way that various software solutions allow you to leverage customer data and product data in order to provide new analytics about these various data sets. Being able to take a deep dive into these attributes has a wide range of benefits for a variety of business processes, and can ultimately transform the way you do business for the better.
All of that being said, data quality is a major concern if you’re really planning on using data to do more than just present information to your existing stakeholders. Data quality refers to the useability and accuracy of the source system you’re pulling reference data some. After all, if your master data is incorrect or is missing an important segment of your customers, your reporting and analytics will be virtually worthless. This is where the concept of master data and master data management, or MDM, comes in. Keep reading to learn more about master data management and how it can be helpful in improving your existing business practices.
What exactly is master data management?
Now that you’ve been introduced to the concept of master data, you’re probably asking yourself, “What is master data management?” The best way to think about master data management is to think of MDM solutions as providing a single source of truth from which to operate.
If your business users keep data in various departments without there being a bridge between those departments via a MDM system, your database may be incomplete or have a lot of duplicates in it. Especially if you’re a larger business entity that works with other vendors, having a source system through a master data management solution means that you have all of your product information and reference data in one, single-source system for easy acquisition.
This ensures that all of your data is being pulled in an accurate manner from the most up-to-date data set, and keeps you away from the dangers of silos. Having complete master data can ultimately benefit your business by protecting you from making avoidable mistakes due to data mismanagement.
How can master data management improve my business practices?
One way that master data management can benefit your business has already been discussed. That’s because having different systems able to access the same MDM means that there are better analytics applications from one department to another. That being said, MDM improves your business practices for reasons that go beyond helping your compare escape from working within data silos. For example, having better master data management can also be part of a regulatory procedure if you deal with customer information that is sensitive in nature.
These sorts of data sources need to be protected in a way that your organization’s data may not need to be, particularly if you’re storing credit card information or medical information about people you work with. An important step in safeguarding that data in terms of regulatory compliance involves managing who is allowed to access that information at any given time and what the use cases are for that kind of information to be accessed.
When you only have one single version of the truth via a master database, it’s much easier to control who accesses certain data and have a record on file of when and why it was exported. This helps protect you and your company.