How to Build Trust In Your Data with Master Data Management

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Master Data Management or in short MDM has been in existence for quite a while now. As Gartner explains

“Master data management (MDM) is a technology-enabled discipline in which business and IT work together to ensure the uniformity, accuracy, stewardship, semantic consistency and accountability of the enterprise’s official shared master data assets.”

In order to achieve 360-degree view of your customer, MDM is a first milestone which should be achieved. Organisations cannot achieve data maturity with out a proper implementation of MDM for their core entities such as customers, suppliers, products etc.. depending on the core competency organisation serves. Master Data Management ensures the definition and maintenance of master data.

Seven building blocks of MDM

MDM should be established as programme which should include seven blocks shown below:

Seven building blocks of Master Data Management

The seven blocks are important for a successful implementation of MDM including

  1. Vision : MDM Vision aligned with business vision and business strategy.
  2. Strategy : MDM strategy of how MDM vision will be implemented.
  3. Governance : MDM governance framework required in order to ensure long-term benefits.
  4. People : Define set of roles and groups who will be involved to implement, consume and manage master data.
  5. Process : Define set of processes that should be followed to author, validate, enrich, publish and consume data.
  6. Technology : Define the underlying Information Architecture along with the list of technologies that will be used.
  7. Metrics : Define a set of metrics that can be measured before, during and after implementation of MDM.

Implementation of your programme success should be monitored using the metrics defined through out various stages of the programme to ensure programme is delivering required benefits. As part of the implementation of the MDM Programme it is very important to establish governance to ensure MDM continues to be responsible of holding master data.

Master Data Governance

Master data provides a standard definition for business critical data which is then shared across the organisation and is considered as the “Single source of truth” or “Single version of truth”. MDM programme delivers the master data but if it is managed and maintained, data will go out-of-sync and the programme will need to executed again. To avoid such concerns implement the following basic governance for your master data.

The 4 step process of Master Data Governance

The 4 phases of Master Data Governance are

  1. Audit : Ensure to perform regular audits to identify issues with your master data
  2. Policy : Define a policy to address rules for data quality, privacy and protection, retention and deletion, and risk management
  3. Process : Define the list of the processes that will ensure master data is managed and maintained by data stewards.
  4. Controls : Define the set of controls which would need authorisation by data owners.

As part of master data governance it is very important to define set of processes around data quality including validity, accuracy, consistency, unique, timeliness and completeness. These processes will be invoked as part of the Audit to verify all of the attributes of data quality.

Monitor Data Quality

Finally it is very important to continuously monitor quality of your master data. As mentioned in the previous section Audits should be performed regularly and should generate a report which should address all 6 dimensions of data quality.

The 6 dimensions of Data Quality

The six dimensions of data quality will include

  • Validity : Is the data valid ie.. follows the right format and adheres to the business rules?
  • Accuracy : Does the data reflect the reality ?
  • Consistency : Is the data consistent across the systems ?
  • Uniqueness : Is the data unique with out any duplicates?
  • Timeliness : Are you able to get the data when you need it?
  • Completeness : Is the data comprehensive enough for use?


Implementing Master Data Management along with Master Data Governance will be a key milestone as part of data transformation. Once you have control over your master data then the next step would be to look into your transactional data so as to produce 360-degree view of your customer.

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