Master Data Management

Master data management (MDM) is a category of software infrastructure that operationalizes the acquisition, distribution, and management of core data entities, including customers, products, and suppliers. As enterprises grapple with service-oriented architecture (SOA) demands, they increasingly recognize the need to manage master data, such as customer, product, supplier, location, and employee data, outside of the core applications that use it. Doing so offers the promise of enabling existing applications to work off the same master data, reducing data quality and redundancy concerns and improving the support of instance consolidation, supplier collaboration, Lean Manufacturing, eCommerce, and business intelligence initiatives.

Latest Research

  • For CIO Professionals

    REPORT: 2017 Technology Imperatives For US Health Insurers

    Regulatory Uncertainty Accelerates The Need For Customer Insight And Engagement

    April 5, 2017 Kate McCarthy

    2017 is likely to be fraught with uncertainty for health insurers as Congress evaluates massive changes to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). During this prolonged period of uncertainty, insurers will struggle to prepare for 2018 open enrollment. Rather than take a wait-and-see approach, insurers should continue to embrace the shift to B2C and close their insight gaps by investing in advanced analytics and insight platforms. Consumer insight and engagement is the surest way for CIOs to reduce cost while improving care and loyalty outcomes. Forrester reviews and revises this report periodically for continued relevance and accuracy.

  • For Enterprise Architecture Professionals

    REPORT: Brief: The MDM Crossroad — To Graph Or Not To Graph?

    Mastering Context For Digital Business Calls For MDM Innovation

    May 5, 2016 Michele Goetz

    Enterprise architects and their business stakeholders have seen master data management (MDM) as a silver bullet for achieving a single view of the business. But they've also seen it as a curse due to its cost, limited ROI, and lack of agility. The missing link to MDM value is the introduction of business context to master data, reshaping the foundation to handle the context needed by business stakeholders. This report shows how innovations in MDM bring context to insight with intelligent, agile, relevant, and real-time services.

  • For Enterprise Architecture Professionals

    REPORT: The Forrester Wave™: Master Data Management, Q1 2016

    The 12 MDM Providers That Matter Most And How They Stack Up

    March 16, 2016 Michele Goetz

    In Forrester's 31-criteria evaluation of master data management (MDM) solution vendors, we identified the 12 most significant software providers in the category — IBM, Informatica, Liaison Technologies, Magnitude Software, Orchestra Networks, Pitney Bowes, Reltio, SAP, SAS, Talend, Teradata, and TIBCO Software — and analyzed and scored them. This report details our findings about how well each vendor fulfills our criteria and where they stand in relation to each other to help enterprise architecture (EA) pros select the right partner for their MDM needs.

  • For Enterprise Architecture Professionals

    REPORT: Brief: Data Governance Disrupts The MDM Status Quo

    October 9, 2014 Michele Goetz

    When data from internal and external sources collide, organizations get a better view and understanding of customers. But when old and new data management principles collide — as they do in light of big data — organizations struggle to find a win-win path forward. Sure, data scientists might skip over significant data governance efforts in favor of speed and agility, but when an organization needs to align insights with operations and actions, all roads lead to master data management (MDM). Without an MDM strategy, data stays in a chaotic state — domains are undefined, entities exhibit no relationships, context of entities is ambiguous due to a lack of attributes, and consistent intelligence is lost. Architects know they need subject matter experts within the business to participate and own their stewardship responsibilities. But MDM tools are not business friendly or supportive of less technical roles and processes. However, MDM technology is changing. This report should spur architects to challenge their strategic vendors to modernize.

  • For Application Development & Delivery Professionals

    REPORT: Embrace Future Trends To Deliver HRM Business Impact

    July 15, 2014 Paul D. Hamerman

    This report outlines the future outlook for application development and delivery (AD&D) professionals working with human resources executives on their applications and business process innovation strategies. It analyzes the evolving state of human resource management (HRM) technology solutions, services, and processes to help Forrester clients formulate a vision for the future over a three- to five-year planning horizon. Technology supporting HRM is advancing at a rapid pace, driven by SaaS adoption and quickly assimilating mobile, social, and "consumerized" user experiences. In parallel with adopting these disruptive technologies, HRM business processes are evolving toward better talent leverage and employee engagement. By investing in HRM strategies now, companies are realizing new ways to drive business value in employee-facing processes while rationalizing fragmented systems that are increasingly difficult to maintain. This report is an update to the original report of the same title dated July 24, 2012. In addition to updating the 10 key HRM trends, it provides revised software adoption data and vendor examples.

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