A new Forrester report, “Master Data Management: Customer Maturity Takes a Great Leap Forward” shows that the focus for Master Data Management internationally is shifting from applications to strategy and data governance.
Is this the case in South Africa?
In my experience, most local MDM projects are very firmly driven by the desire to implement one or the other of the various MDM applications. When strategy or governance is brought into play this is very often as an afterthought – the application has already been selected and functional delivery is well under way.
MDM remains a complex problem with the different uses of data by different business owners creating serious political complexities that can only be resolved by an enterprise view of data – precisely the role data governance organisations are intended to play.
Data integration and data quality hurdles are also typically seriously underestimated – for example, legacy integration issues may rule out common application architectures such as the Master / Consumer approach favoured by many MDM vendors. At the very least data inconsistencies and mapping issues need to be completely resolved before consumer systems can be overwritten – a frequently underestimated challenge.
How much attention are you giving to the strategy and governance of your MDM initiative? Are we following the international trend?