Data Governance More Popular Among Those Deploying MDM


It seems companies are interested in applying master data management beyond the typical master data domains of customer and product data. According to a recent survey by The Information Difference, companies apply MDM to an average of four domains, with location and supplier data following customer and product data in importance. (That's what the text says, although I noticed that the graph shows sales and marketing data ranked neck-and-neck with supplier data.)


The results appear this week in an Information Management article written by David Waddington, senior vice president and co-founder of The Information Difference. This survey has been mentioned previously, and was available for download if you were willing to provide basic registration information, but this article provides much of the same information without requiring a download.


The findings on data governance in particular attracted my attention. Earlier this month, I wrote about data governance, which according to a recent Initiate survey, is about as popular as a root canal. Initiate CTO Marty Mosely said by his math, only five to eight companies out of nearly 100 had any meaningful data governance directives.


But The Information Difference survey should give some hope to advocates of data governance. It found that two-thirds of those with MDM have data governance in place. I'm not sure how that remaining one-third is doing MDM without some sort of data governance, but there you go. That said, 43 percent maintain their business rules in their ETL tools, which means ETL is the main point for managing data quality-a finding that Waddington characterized as surprising.


It's well worth reading the full article, too, because it's very accessible and contains a number of interesting revelations about both MDM and data warehousing.


For instance, I've long wondered how companies felt about their MDM implementations, given how expensive and, well, burdensome they can be. The survey queried 208 respondents across the world. Of those, almost half have at least one data warehouse and an MDM project either live or in development, and an additional 7 percent have only an MDM project. So, a good number are engaged in MDM.


Of those who are doing MDM, two-thirds report it's at least moderately successful; only 1 percent said it was unsuccessful.


And I suspect a number of MDM analysts will be relieved to see that 57 percent of MDM implementations are enterprise-wide, which, really, is how it should be.


The survey also explores the correlation between MDM and data warehousing, MDM and business intelligence applications (almost two-thirds of organizations feed their master data directly into BI apps) and data warehouse update schedules.


Speaking of master data management, Oracle's doing some interesting work with its own MDM suite and its recent BI release, according to Merv Adrian, founder of IT Market Strategy. It's a fairly complicated read, but the core of it seems to be the addition of Oracle's Common Enterprise Information Model (CEIM), a semantic middleware layer, and its placement to Oracle's Master Data Management Suite in the stack. Adrian seems quite impressed by what Oracle's doing with this new release, but he's particularly excited about what it might mean for all Fusion applications down the line. He goes so far as to call it a "powerful argument for giving Oracle more of your infrastructure."


He also notes that while it leverages "the growing capabilities of Oracle Data Integrator," Oracle still has some work to do in the data integration area and "still [sells] a lot of Informatica to its customers."


It's a thorough review that can be a bit tricky to follow, but it does give you an idea where Oracle is headed with all of its acquisitions.