Master Data Management – Myths and Facts

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Over the years as they gain experience, organizations educate themselves about the ins and outs of Master Data Management and MDM solutions. However many business managers and business leaders still aren’t aware of what Master Data Management is, this makes it necessary to educate them about Master Data Management and things that are important. For those who know, there are many misconceptions that are needed to be cleared out.

MDM is an IT problem

Myth! Master Data Management is a business problem fundamentally which is why it is needed to be implemented with a business objective in place. The source of poor data for most organizations come from the business process rather than the IT department. Issues like delayed product launches, customer complaints, high supply chain costs beyond the scope of IT are often are areas where poor quality data may be massing.

Further, understanding where data gaps may exist within an organization takes a lot of in-depth research to figure out the lack of reliable data which is another major challenge. Such problems are effectively addressed by an MDM solution, which aggregates, cleanses and validates master data with the target to improve the business processes. This indicates that an MDM initiative can only be successful when there are valid improvements in the business processes and their outcomes.

However, this does not mean that IT departments have no role in Master Data Management. They do. IT departments are critical players for making the overall MDM initiative successful, beginning from deployment all the way to upgrading and support of the tools that ensure fair business practices according to business goals.
diagram of Master Data Management

MDM is costly

Myth! This is also another big myth largely popular with people who also think that Master Data Management is an IT problem. It has been believed for lothird-partyanizations with heavy budgets can only afford the Master Data Management initiatives and only large organizations that have large budgets. However, this is not true anymore, costs of implementing MDM tools are not even close to what they used to be a few years ago.

One big factor is that third party hosted deployment models have made MDM tools more an operating expense than a capital expenditure by eliminating the need for the companies to have their own hardware and the need to pay for installation and periodic maintenance of the systems.

Another big factor is that there are many new players for the MDM in the market, which means now you can choose from various providers. This reduces the costs associated with the MDM implementation due to the number of providers to choose from. This also means Master Data Management is becoming increasingly popular amongst various small and mid-sized organizations due to the reduced costs.

We don’t need MDM

Myth! It is common for the organizations –that have recently migrated to ERP solutions and consequently cleansed their data– to believe that they do not need an MDM solution. However, this is not right. While cleaning the data is important in itself, but the organization cannot neglect the use of Master Data Management and continuous governance to keep the data clean.

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