More than Product Information Management (PIM)


Data management functions as an interplay of diverse processes with minimum friction. This interaction in turn lives from the uniqueness of the most elementary business information: company master data, not just product information. Nevertheless, there is still some catching up to do in the area of Master Data Management (MDM). The opportunities offered by MDM enable completely new ways of dealing with master data, clear the way for new business models and revenue sources, and open up unimagined automation potential.

Change as an opportunity for better data

The decisive factor is the vision of the company with the answers to the questions:
  • What is the overall goal? 
  • How is success measured? 
  • What strategies and initiatives do I derive from this? 
Digital fitness is more important than ever for the sustainability of companies. Ideally, the starting point for successful digital transformation is the handling of master data. Until the end of the 1990s, almost all data was stored in ERP systems, but since the beginning of 2000 the Internet has presented new challenges such as e-commerce and customer relationship management. These developments, which are running at fast innovation speeds, have not been and are not satisfactorily covered by ERP systems. The best conditions for new so-called "island solutions" to take over the new tasks.

Why Master Data Management?

Clean data management is becoming another crucial competitive factor. Independent of the sales channel: Customers in the B2B and B2C sector are increasingly focusing on individual wishes, product diversifications are increasing the quantity of articles on offer.
ERP, CMS, Excel, an honest look shows in most cases a "grown system" in data management. Depending on the situation and department, companies reacted to the growing demands of digitization. The noticeable consequences are erroneous or inconsistent data, high efforts in data generation and maintenance, but also in making the data available. This process, which develops over years, is not only error-prone but also highly inefficient. Especially when managing a company from a global perspective, a lack of transparency, misleading information and wasted business potential can considerably reduce economic success.

What is Master Data Management?

The MDM system is nothing more than a place where the master data is centrally stored and made available.
The data has certain properties (attributes) and relationships that are defined in data models. Within these freely and flexibly configurable data models, the data can be enriched with further information, texts and translations. Data modeling ensures correct classification of the data, data validation and quality reports offer automated control options and enable high-quality data quality. The MDM system is embedded in the system architecture and "supplied" with data by other systems such as ERP or CRM systems as well as cloud systems.
When used correctly, Master Data Management is a powerful lever for standardization, streamlining business processes, increasing quality and reducing costs.

Architecture as a success factor

Solution approaches that concentrate exclusively on the use of current MDM software tools are often not sufficient. What is needed is a holistic view of the organization, processes, system landscape, MDM software and relevant master data. It is always a complex interaction of products, solutions and services to manage complex processes. These factors are decisive for the conception of the IT infrastructure in the context of the digital transformation of a company and its business models.
Michael Grothe Contact for
Master Data Management

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