I hosted a party last weekend. My friend Tara who works at a recruiting firm wanted to understand the value of master data management (MDM). Her firm, which operates across the country, is struggling with inconsistent and duplicate candidate information in their recruiting software.
Tara may have just placed candidate “Anita Gupta” at Company A and updated her record in the recruiting system to show that Anita was “just hired.” The recruiting firm will get their fee and Tara her bonus if Anita stays 90 days.
However, what happens if there is a duplicate candidate record in the system? Imagine if “Anita Gupta” has two records. One is misspelled “Aneeta Gupta” and this second record reflects her old status “actively looking for a new opportunity.” Another recruiter from Tara’s firm calls “Aneeta Gupta” on her first day at Company A to see if she’s interested in a position at Company B. This inconsistent data issue doesn’t just create embarrassment for the recruiters; it makes them look incompetent, and puts their recruiting firm’s brand and income at risk.
As we were talking and welcoming other guests to the party, I thought of an analogy to make it easier for those who are not in IT to understand the power of master data management. If MDM was a person at the party, she would be the social butterfly, who can answer the question “Who’s who?”.
Humor me for a moment. Imagine you host a party in your IT environment and all your systems and applications are living people. Envision:
- The analytical application is the intellectual in the room, not so keen on small talk.
- The data warehouse is well connected.
- The Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system is the person who is unattached with a limited social circle.
- The e-Business application is up on all the trends and likes to recommend products.
- The marketing automation application likes to network with everyone at the party and gather business cards.
- The Customer Relationship Management (CRM) or Salesforce Automation (SFA) application is always prospecting and looking for opportunities to sell.
- MDM is the social butterfly.
MDM just arrived at the party of systems and applications. She introduces herself to the analytical application and data warehouse and finds out they are a bit confused. Turns out they know:
- John Quincy Jones, CFO of General Electric in the US, and
- John Q. Jones, VP Finance from GE Company in the United States of America
They are not sure if this is the same person or two different people. John just keeps popping up in their systems and reports. MDM smiles. This is her specialty! She’s an expert at resolving this type of confusion about “Who’s Who?”.
She flutters over and introduces herself to the ERP system and asks if he knows a John Jones. Yes, he does! He knows John Quincy Jones, CFO of General Electric in the US. ERP recently updated his corporate billing address. But he’s not sure if John Quincy Jones and John Q. Jones are the same person.
- Next she introduces herself to the e-Business application who knows a John Q. Jones, VP, Finance from GE Company in the United States of America. He just bought 1000 widgets online yesterday. But he’s not sure if John Q. Jones and John Quincy Jones are the same person.
- MDM flies over to the CRM application who believes they are two different people because there are two separate opportunities: J. Q. Jones, Chief Financial Officer works for GE in the USA and John Q. Jones is CFO of The General Electric Company in the United States.
- In her conversation with the marketing automation application she discovers that just in the past year she’s met five people with similar names like John Quincy Jones, John Q. Jones, J. Jones, J. Q. Jones and Mr. Jones at various events and online.
How did this confusion happen? While systems and applications like ERP, e-Business and CRM are great at the specific work they do, they are not experts at resolving “Who’s Who?”.
MDM was made for bringing systems and applications together, resolving the “Who’s Who” issues, and preventing duplicate data from entering. MDM consolidates all the information from these systems and applications, regardless of whether they reside on-premise or in the cloud, and creates a single customer view of John Quincy Jones, including his title, company, all his contact information, and the products he’s purchased.
MDM also manages relationships and company account hierarchies on an ongoing basis, so everyone at the systems and applications party is up to speed on which subsidiaries are part of The General Electric Company account hierarchy today and in the past. I’ll write a separate blog post on this.
Then MDM shares this trusted customer information about John Quincy Jones with the data warehouse, the analytical application for reporting and decision-making, and all other systems and applications that want this information to improve operations.
Because they invited MDM to the party, all the systems and applications have a single customer view of John Quincy Jones, Chief Financial Officer at The General Electric Company, based in the United States.
Ask yourself whether you are currently making decisions and improving operations based on trusted customer data, trusted prospect data, trusted company data, trusted candidate data or whatever other business-critical data is in the applications and systems you use everyday.
Deliver a trusted and consistent data to your systems and applications, whether they are on-premise or in the cloud. Invite Informatica MDM to join your IT environment and sort out your “Who’s Who?” issues.
- Watch this Video: The Impact of MDM and DQ on Data Warehousing and Reporting
- Read this Executive Brief: Top Five Reasons Not to Master Your Data in SAP ERP
- View this Demo: Enrich Customer Data in Your CRM Application with MDM
(John Quincy Jones stars in this demo)