In a recent interview with yours truly on the Fliptop blog I had the chance to answer a question about how Social MDM is different from traditional MDM (Master Data Management). Check out the interview here.
As said in the interview I think that:
“The main difference between MDM as it has been practiced until now and Social MDM is that traditional MDM has been around handling internal master data and Social MDM will be more around exploiting external reference data and sharing those data.”
This is in line with a take away from the MDM Summit Europe 2013 as reported in the post Adding 180 Degrees to MDM.
But, as asked by a member of the Social MDM group on LinkedIn:
“What is the industry or analysts’ consensus on the meaning of Social MDM? Is it just gathering Master Data from social sources? Not really MDM – where is the Management part?”
You may follow the discussion here.
I definitely think that the management part is there, but it is different. Management is different in the social sphere in general. Data governance is different when it comes to social data (and other big data for that matter). Relying on social collaboration when maintaining master data is different from implementing “a data steward regime”.
In my eyes the management part is about balancing the use of internal master and the use of external reference data. Every organization should very carefully assess if they are good at maintaining different aspects of their internal master data (Hint: Many aren’t). Getting help from traditional data collectors and the new social sources and using social collaboration may very well be an important part of the solution.