As described in the post Small Data with Big Impact my guess is that we will see Master Data Management solutions as a core element in having data architectures that are able to make sustainable results from dealing with big data.
If we look at party master data a serious problem with many ERP and CRM systems around is that the data model for party master data aren’t good enough for dealing with the many different forms and differences in which the parties we hold data about are represented in big data sources which makes the linking between traditional systems of record and big data very hard.
Having a Master Data Management (MDM) solution with a comprehensive data model for party master data is essential here.
Some of the capabilities we need are:
Storing multiple occurrences of attributes
People and companies have many phone numbers, they have many eMail addresses and they have many social identities and you will for sure meet these different occurrences in big data sources. Relating these different occurrences to the same real world entity is essential as reported in the post 180 Degree Prospective Customer View isn’t Unusual.
An MDM hub with a corresponding data model is the place to manage that challenge in one place.
Exploiting rich external reference data
As told in the post Where the Streets have Two Names and emphasized in the comments to the post the real world has plenty of examples of the same thing having many names. And this real world will be reflected in big data sources.
Your MDM solution should embrace external reference data solving these issues.
Handling the time dimension
In the post A Place in Time the flaws of the usual customer table in ERP and CRM systems is examined. One common issue is handling when attributes changes. Change of address happens a lot. And this may be complicated by that we may operate several address types at the same time like visiting addresses, billing addresses and correspondence addresses. These different addresses will also pop up in big data sources. And the same goes for other attributes.
You must get that right in your MDM implementation.