Three Not So Easy Steps to a 360-Degree Customer View

Getting a 360-degree view (or single view) of your customers has been a quest in data management as long as I can remember.

This has been the (unfulfilled) promise of CRM applications since they emerged 25 years ago. Data quality tools has been very much about deduplication of customer records. Customer Data Integration (CDI) and the first Master Data Management (MDM) platforms were aimed at that conundrum. Now we see the notion of a Customer Data Platform (CDP) getting traction.

There are three basic steps in getting a 360-degree view of those parties that have a customer role within your organization – and these steps are not at all easy ones:

360 Degree Customer View

  • Step 1 is identifying those customer records that typically are scattered around in the multiple systems that make up your system landscape. You can do that (endlessly) by hand, using the very different deduplication functionality that comes with ERP, CRM and other applications, using a best-of-breed data quality tool or the data matching capabilities built into MDM platforms. Doing this with adequate results takes a lot as pondered in the post Data Matching and Real-World Alignment.
  • Step 2 is finding out which data records and data elements that survives as the single source of truth. This is something a data quality tool can help with but best done within an MDM platform. The three main options for that are examined in the post Three Master Data Survivorship Approaches.
  • Step 3 is gathering all data besides the master data and relate those data to the master data entity that identifies and describes the real-world entity with a customer role. Today we see both CRM solution vendors and MDM solution vendors offering the technology to enable that as told in the post CDP: Is that part of CRM or MDM?

2 thoughts on “Three Not So Easy Steps to a 360-Degree Customer View

  1. theslowdiyer 24th August 2019 / 12:02

    A good start, but aren’t you forgetting the “non-technical” areas such as developing data processes, anchoring the roles&responsibilities and aligning the organisation to the new tools and ways of working? (and possibly even a formal capability mapping & evaluation for business/IT/organisation)? If you do not add these things your have basically pumped the water out of your boat but you haven’t fixed the leak!

    I’ve seen quite a few initiatives start up in this way and at some point it becomes hard to tell people politely that what they are doing is not fixing their problem but just doing a scheduled cleanup exercise which they will have to repeat from scratch at regular intervals?

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