multidomain master data management (MDM)

Explained: What is multidomain master data management (MDM)?

As businesses grow and expand, the amount of data they generate and store multiplies. Given the exponential increase in data, it has become increasingly challenging to manage and maintain accurate and consistent information across multiple domains. This is where multidomain master data management (MDM) forays and unleashes a difference.

Multidomain MDM puts focus on streamlining data centralization and encouraging collaboration. It’s a practice that enables a unified, integrated infrastructure for managing and maintaining an organization’s critical data curated from multiple domains. Multidomain MDM has never been more fundamental to enterprises due to the exponential amounts of data generated daily and the need to ensure consistency and integrity of data across all business verticals for efficient bottom lines.


multidomain MDM structure

                                                                                    (What a typical multidomain MDM structure looks like?)

What makes the use of multidomain MDM significant?

In an era marked by rapid changes and market disruptions, accurate and consistent data is the key to making informed decisions and leading businesses to sustainable growth. Multidomain MDM unlocks a centralized, integrated, and streamlined system for managing data from different domains, augmenting data consistency at scale and helping professionals gain a 360-degree view of business for unleashing value.

For instance, consider a retail business that sells products offline and online. The business must have consistent, errorless data about its products, sales, and customer journeys. With multidomain MDM, the business can maintain accurate information across channels, unlock a single source of truth, and enhance the  decision-making process with data across the scale of the business, including the website, physical stores, and mobile applications. As a result, it can drive intelligent decisions from the top and improve the overall growth matrix.

Advantages of multidomain MDM

Multidomain MDM offers several advantages over traditional, single-domain MDM, including improved data accuracy, increased efficiency, and greater flexibility to adapt to business disruptions. We will describe a couple of them in detail below. 

  1. Improved data quality: Multidomain MDM creates a solid foundation for data management, eliminating chances of duplication, inconsistencies, and errors. As a result, organizations can avoid the pitfalls of inaccurate decision-making and establish a future-ready growth posture.
  2. Enhanced data governance: Since multidomain MDM keeps data errors and anomalies in check, it becomes easier for organizations to ensure data compliance with industry regulations and policies and leverage it as an efficiency driver across the operations lifecycle.
  3. Rapid decision-making: Multidomain MDM comes with data veracity. As data value gaps are closed, organizations are no longer required to assess data frequently and are positioned better to make decisions faster while deriving maximum value from it.
  4. Enhanced customer experience: Multidomain MDM improves customer experience bottom lines. By helping understand user personas, preferences, and demographics through data, multidomain MDM helps organizations shape personalized user experiences, deliver them seamlessly, and earn the market traction they deserve. 

Challenges of implementing multidomain MDM

Multidomain MDM brings a bonanza of benefits. However, implementing it can be challenging. Some challenges organizations face while adopting multidomain MDM are:

  1. Data complexity stonewalls the end objective: Managing data across multiple domains can be complex as each domain has its own set of attributes, models, and relationships. Given the multiplicity of domains and deepened complexity, achieving the desired end-state of data and creating a unified view can be challenging. Sometimes, such initiatives often span over several years, and the final goal drifts away. Many organizations lose focus on the end objective and abandon the process halfway, resulting in the loss of potential benefits. 
  2. Governance is a major hindrance: Multidomain MDM calls for a clear and coherent governance structure to ensure effective data management. However, bringing information sources with varied characteristics together creates a situation of unstructured data and makes data governance difficult. Moreover, many organizations fail to take notice of external dependencies. As a result, the entire initiative is impaired by conflicts, silos, and lack of accountability and turns futile. 
  3. Scalability is a pain point: Organizations often implement multidomain MDM programs with a short-term view—and don’t consider evolving business scenarios. Consequently, they struggle to scale their initiative as the market evolves and get stuck with an outdated operating model. Besides, scaling an MDM program hits a roadblock as soon as the realization of scaling a deluge of data strikes. Since managing a diverse range of data can be complex, scalability initiatives fail, leading to performance degradation, delays, and errors. 
  4. Resistance to change fractures the process: Implementing multidomain MDM initiatives requires a fundamental shift in processes, systems, and culture. However, driving change is tough and can meet a hostile environment where familiarity means survival. Employees—especially the ones working for a longer duration of time—are wired to an established, protracted set of processes and avoid threats that come with volatile environments. So, resistance to change can also be a barrier to MDM implementation.

Understanding and overcoming challenges: Best practices for multidomain MDM implementation

Notably, implementing multidomain MDM initiatives is a holistic change requiring a holistic approach. The process doesn’t entail changing data management but the complete data fabric in an organization. And so, companies must adhere to a proven set of practices for implementing multidomain MDM for maximum value.

multidomain MDM implementation

                                                                                                                         (Best practices for MDM implementation)

Multidomain MDM: What does the future have in store?

The future of multidomain master data management (MDM) is promising as organizations continue to recognize the value of having a single source of truth at scale. Here are some potential developments that may shape the future of MDM:

  1. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning: The use of AI and ML can nip a host of multidomain MDM challenges in the bud, evening out the pathways for future advancements. Firstly, the technologies can be instrumental in infusing automation at the ground level into the data fabric of the organization. AI and ML can automate the cataloging, cleansing, matching, and merging of data, along with inventorying the important elements to streamline data governance within an organization. Moreover, these technologies can also help identify patterns, insights, and anomalies from large datasets, enabling better decision-making and improving business performance. 
  2. Cloud-based MDM: Cloud-based MDM solutions offer several benefits, such as scalability, flexibility, and cost-effectiveness. Cloud-based solutions can also facilitate integration with other cloud-based applications, making managing data across multiple platforms easier.
  3. Blockchain-based MDM: Blockchain technology can provide a secure and tamper-proof way of managing data, which is critical for industries such as finance and healthcare. Blockchain-based MDM can enable secured data sharing between organizations and improve data quality by creating a single source of truth.
  4. Integration with IoT: The Internet of Things (IoT) generates vast amounts of data, which can be challenging to manage. MDM can play a critical role in integrating IoT data with other data sources and creating a unified view of data for better decision-making.
  5. Data Governance and Privacy: As data privacy and governance regulations become more stringent, MDM can help organizations comply with these regulations by ensuring the accuracy, completeness, and consistency of data. MDM can also help organizations manage data access, retention, and destruction policies.

The growing clout of new-age technologies and the continuous emphasis on improving data privacy and governance measures will likely shape the future of multidomain MDM. As organizations continue to prioritize data-driven decision-making, the criticality of multidomain MDM will grow, moving the needle of growth for enterprises and helping them leverage data as a high-performance engine.