Multi-Cultural Capabilities in MDM, PIM and Data Quality Management

When implementing Master Data Management (MDM), Product Information Management (PIM) and Data Quality Management (DQM) solutions in international environments – and even in national environments in countries with more than one official language – there will be some requirements around multi-cultural aspects of the solution. These are namely:

  • Multi-language capabilities
  • Handling different character sets and script systems
  • Utilizing third party reference data

Multi-language capabilities

A lot of master data elements can be represented in different languages. Examples are:

  • City names
  • Product classifications
  • Product descriptions

The ability to store master data in different language versions, validate according to the language in play and consume the data in the right context can be an essential factor when selecting the right tool and configuration of a tool.

When doing a Proof of Concept of a solution where the end environment will be international, you must do the pilot covering several languages.

Character sets and script systems

Critical data elements must often be kept in versions covering more than one character set or even script system. Examples are:

  • Person and company names
  • Postal addresses
  • Product features

While most solutions in the MDM, PIM and DQM space has developed a lot since examples of only covering the English alphabet in capital letters, there are still capability gaps worth exploring before implementing your solution in all corners of the world.

Third party reference data

The availability and requirements around referencing and enriching with third party data from public, commercial and open sources differs a lot from country to country. This includes:

  • External company IDs as Legal Entity Identifiers, Duns Numbers, national registration numbers (SIREN, ABN, KvK, CVR…..) and VAT numbers.
  • External person IDs as national ID systems (SSN, NINO, NIF, CF, INSEE, SIN, CPR ….)
  • Postal code systems (ZIP, PLZ, PIN ….) and address directories for the given country.

When working with third party reference data for purposes of unique identification, enrichment and validation you must strike a balance between having a uniform global process and local best practices (and lawful processes) for each master data domain.

Some solutions are very fit for a given geography but may have challenges in other geographies.

Your context, scope and requirements

When selecting an MDM, PIM and/or DQM solution you must take relevant multi-cultural capabilities into consideration. The tool selection help service on this site also covers the multi-cultural context, scope and requirements. You can access Select your solution here.

Multi Cultural MDM PIM DQM

PS: The tower shown is The Tower of Babel.

Master Data Workflow Management

Workflow management has become a core requirement for organizations on the look for a Master Data Management (MDM) and/or Product Data Management (PIM) solution.

In the early days of MDM solutions, these applications were often integrated with a third-party workflow engine, but today it has become most common that the workflow management capability is built-in and comes as a – sometimes extra charged – native part of the solution.

The approval process for onboarding master data entities is the most frequent use case for building a master data workflow. However, we increasingly see other use cases addressed, not at least data quality checks (which also supports the approval process).

For party master data (customer and other roles) some examples of workflow elements are:

For product master data some examples are:

  • Completeness check for various stages (sellable, catalogue ready, online ready)
  • Compliance check and approval
  • Pricing approval

Below are a few examples on how MDM/PIM vendors promote and explain their workflow offering:

Master Data Workflow Management

The examples are taken from the Contentserv MDM, Dynamicweb PIM, Reltio workflow & collaboration and Semarchy xDM pages.

It Takes Less than 15 Million USD to be on This List

The Gartner Magic Quadrant for Master Data Management Solutions is probably the most referenced vendor ranking service in the MDM space. You can see which vendors that are included in the quadrant – and their yearly revenue as estimated by Gartner – in the post MDM Vendor Revenues According to Gartner.

The entrance ticket for vendors in the quadrant is a yearly MDM related software (license and maintenance) revenue of minimum 15 Million USD.

This list (The Disruptive MDM/PIM List) does not require any minimum revenue for vendors to register their solution. Some of the already listed solutions are also included in the Gartner MDM Magic Quadrant and some are not (yet).

For organizations on the look for an MDM and/or PIM solution this means that there is a choice of considering both larger and established disruptive solutions and considering newer and specialized solutions for a longlist and a shortlist within a tool selection activity.

These are the solutions currently on the list:

Specialized or Gartnerish

Lear more about these solutions on the list.

Digital Transformation Success Rely on MDM / PIM Success

It is hard to find an organization who do not want to be on the digital transformation wagon today. But how can you ensure that your digital transformation journey will be a success? One of the elements in making sure that this data driven process will be a success will be to have a solid foundation of Master Data Management (MDM) including Product Information Management (PIM).

The core concepts here are:

  • Providing a 360-degree view of master data entities: Engaging with your customers across a range of digital platforms is a core part of any digital transformation. Having a 360-degree view of your customer has never been more important, and that starts with well-organized and maintained customer master data. The same is true for supplier master data and other party master data. 360-degree view of locations is equally important. The same goes for products and assets as pondered in post Golden Records in Multidomain MDM.
  • Enabling happy self-service scenarios: Customer data are gathered from many sources and digital self-registration is becoming the most common used method. The self-service theme has also emerged in handling supplier master data as self-service based supplier portals have become common as the place where supplier/vendor master data is captured and maintained. Interacting with your trading partners on digital platforms and having the most complete product information in front of your customers in self-service online selling scenarios requires a solid foundation for product master data and Product experience Management (PxM).
  • Underpinning the best customer experience: Customer experience (CX) and MDM must go hand in hand. Both themes involve multiple business units and digital environments within your enterprise and in the wider business ecosystem, where your enterprise operates. Master data is the glue that brings the data you hold about your customers together as well as the glue that combines this with the data you share about your product offering.
  • Encompassing Internet of Things (IoT): Smart devices that produces big data can be used to gain much more insight about parties (in customer and other roles), products, locations and the things themselves. You can only do that effectively by relating IoT and MDM.

Digital Transformation Success

What is PxM?

Product experience Management (PxM or PXM) is a trending term in the Master Data Management (MDM) and Product Information Management (PIM) world.

As reported in the post Product Something Management the acronym PxM is one of several three letter acronyms starting with P and ending with M in play in this space.

Some of the topics handled in a PxM solution that can be seen as a development of traditional PIM solution are:

  • Analysis of product content including encompassing other data domains
  • Emphasis on product content that is search engine optimized (SEO)
  • Context aware presentation of product content
  • Personalization of product content
  • Exploiting Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the above-mentioned scenarios

Solution vendors on the market are positioning themselves in relation to PxM as some vendors are going in the direction of being a PxM vendor while other vendors embrace the span from MDM over PIM to PxM. This urges solution buyers on the market to focus on implementing PxM from a best of breed vendor in this realm or to look for one-stop-shopping.

You can meet both kind of solution vendors on this list.

PxM wordle