Mastering Data: Beyond Customer and Product


Mastering Data: Beyond Customer and Product

A paper by Andy Hayler published April 2008

The master data management (MDM) market has seen a battle of ideas over the last couple of years between “cross domain” approaches and specialist hubs for separate classes of master data, particularly “customer” and “product”.  In this new white paper Andy Hayler charts this battle and discusses the types of MDM architectures which play out in large enterprises.

Andy argues that the specialist hub approach has clear drawbacks from an architectural standpoint, especially in situations where companies are multi-national.  There are many types of master data beyond customer and product, something beginning to be acknowledged by the industry. The whole idea of MDM is to improve the current messy situation where application silos compete over the ownership of master data.  Yet a proliferation of separate specialist hubs may result in a new generation of silos.
In many cases it is impractical for enterprises to deploy a single hub or hubs at the enterprise level.  What is needed is the ability for cross-domain hubs to be deployed in a managed federation, yet few vendors have even begun to address this issue.

Since 2006 there has been a sea change in vendor marketing, as companies who previously defended the specialist hub approach have set out roadmaps to integrate their separate technologies.  Smaller independent MDM vendors have a window of opportunity to prosper by offering a cross-domain approach today, while the industry giants execute on their long-term integration roadmaps.

The white paper has 9 pages.