The term Application Data Management (ADM) has been circulating in the Master Data Management (MDM) world for some time as touched in the post MDM Fact or Fiction: Who Knows?
Not at least Gartner, the analyst firm, has touted this as one of two Disruptive Forces in MDM Land. The two terms MDM and ADM relates as seen below:
So, ADM takes care of a lot of data that both is master data but also data that we do not usually consider being master data within a given application while MDM takes care of master data across multiple applications.
The big question is how we handle the intersection (and sum of intersections in the IT landscape) when it comes to applying technology.
If you have an IT landscape with a dominant application like for example SAP ECC you are tempted to handle the master data within that application as your master data hub or using a vendor provided tightly integrated tool as for example SAP MDG. For specific master data domains, you might for example regard your CRM application as your customer master data hub. Here MDM and ADM melts into one process and technology platform.
If you have an IT landscape with multiple applications, you could consider implementing a specific MDM platform that receives master data from and provides master data to applications that takes care of all the other data used for specific business objectives. Here MDM and ADM will be in separated processes using best-of-breed technology.
Finally we also see platforms that previously were branded as MDM platforms but now evolves into general data management platforms covering more than just master data.