Five Essential MDM / PIM Capabilities

Many of the recent posts here on the blog have been around some of the most essential capabilities that Master Data Management (MDM) and Product Information Management (PIM) solutions are able to provide.

Five MDM PIM CapabilitiesData Matching

Having the ability to match and link master data records that are describing the same real-world entity is probably most useful in MDM and in the context of party master data. However, there are certainly also scenarios where product master data must be matched. While identifying the duplicates is hard enough, there must also be functionality to properly settle the match as explained in the post Three Master Data Survivorship Approaches.

Workflow Management

While the first MDM / PIM solutions emphasized on storing “a single source of truth” for master data, most tools today also provide functionality for processing master data. This is offered through integrated workflows as examined in the post Master Data Workflow Management.

Hierarchy Management

Master data comes in hierarchies (and even graphs). Examples are company family trees, locations and product classifications as told in the post Hierarchy Management in MDM and PIM.

Handling Multiple Cultures

If your solution will be implemented across multiple countries – and even in countries with multiple languages – you must be able to manage versions of master data and product information in these languages and often also represented in multiple alphabets and script systems. This challenge is described in the post Multi-Cultural Capabilities in MDM, PIM and Data Quality Management.

Reference Data Management

The terms master data and reference data are sometimes used synonymously. The post What is Reference Data Management (RDM)? is about what is usually considered special about reference data. Some MDM (and PIM) solutions also encompasses the handling of reference data.

The Capabilities That You Need

The above-mentioned capabilities are just some of the requirements you can mark in a service that can draft a list of MDM/PIM/DQM tools that are most relevant for you. Try it here: Select your solution.

MDM Fact or Fiction: Who Knows?

Over at the IRM connects blog Aaron Zornes wrote about MDM & Data Governance Market 2018-19: Facts vs. Beliefs.

It is always fun to be entertained by analysts bashing each other and Aaron Zornes makes no exception in his blog post when pointing out that it took Gartner 12 years to realize that there are not two MDM markets anymore (Customer MDM / CDI vs Product MDM /PIM) but only one.

Also, the recent vitalized notion of Application Data Management (ADM) by Gartner gets a few words about who is lagging and who is leading in market analysis.

Else the two entertaining trends the coming years will according to Aaron Zornes be Graph databases and machine learning.

MDM ADMSo, a lot of questions for buyers and vendors are piling up:

  • Should your solution be multi-domain MDM or will there still be room for specialized CDI (Customer Data Integration) and PIM (Product Information Management) solutions?
  • Does ADM (Application Data Management) solutions, meaning building your master data capabilities inside ERP, CRM and so make sense?
  • Will graph databases really brake through in MDM soon?
  • Can ML (Machine Learning) help delivering business benefits in MDM – and when will that happen?

As the analysts disagree between each other, you can have your say here on the list by commenting on this blog post, under the registered solutions or as a not yet listed vendor registering your disruptive solution.