In recent conversations, I’ve been asked whether line of business executives are getting involved in master data management (MDM), or whether MDM is still mostly an IT initiative.
From our experience at Informatica, the business is absolutely involved! In fact, it’s often a high-impact business event that triggers the alarm that a company needs MDM and data quality to deliver trusted and complete data. Many times, the root cause of these business problems is inconsistent, incomplete and duplicated customer data. Two examples:
1) An $8 billion technology manufacturer implemented Informatica MDM after its IT team couldn’t quickly and accurately respond to an executive’s request for a list of the company’s top 400 B2B customers. It took IT six weeks to assemble the information because it was scattered across applications, and many large customers had complex hierarchies with multiple subsidiaries that all had to be reconciled by hand. Next step, focus on the next 400 customers.
2) The world’s largest wealth management company, with 59 million consumer and small business clients, turned to MDM after realizing it was losing cross-sell and up-sell opportunities because its 16,000 financial advisors were spending 70 percent of their time collecting and reconciling disparate customer data from multiple applications. With Informatica MDM, these customer-focused professionals now have a single client profile with a 360-degree view empowering them to enhance client experience by targeting customers with relevant offers and aligning service to customer value. Next step, enable this view across channels.
The level of interest in how to better manage customers—and customer data—as a strategic asset is at an all-time high. If you want to know more, check out the Chalk Talks, Demos and Executive Briefs and Whitepapers available on the Customer Acquisition & Retention section of our website.
However, I have also heard stories from IT about how the business doesn’t yet appreciate the importance of MDM. The business case often comes down to illustrating how MDM enables quantifiably higher revenue through better customer acquisition and retention. If you are struggling with this issue of explaining the value of MDM to your business leaders, I suggest you check out our most downloaded Executive Brief this year and share it with your business leaders: What Your CEO Should Know About Master Data Management.
Also, another useful tip is this one, from Gartner’s John Radcliffe. He advises IT how to approach business people on the topic of MDM: “…the term ‘MDM’ does have a problem when it comes to the business. If you went to a head of marketing or head of sales and mentioned MDM they would say ‘MD what?’ But if you asked them if they want a single view of the customer or want to drive more sales and do cross-marketing and cross-selling and improve customer retention and customer experience – all the classic CRM business drivers – they would say that is exactly what they want to do. So in a way, let’s not call it ‘MDM’ – let’s call it the customer experience improvement program, or customer onboarding process improvement program. But underneath it you have this MDM capability being put in.” Here’s the full article if you are interested: Is master data management CRM’s secret sauce?
Are your business executives aware of the business benefits of MDM? Are they involved in your MDM initiative?