Why are Analyst Rankings Behind the MDM Market Dynamics?

From time to time, analyst firms publish market reports that include their opinion and ranking of the vendors/solution providers in a specific market, such as Master Data Management (MDM).

Reading such reports, it strikes me that the rankings often do not seem to be in line with what is going in the market, especially when you consider market positioning, demand and technological developments.

One example was touched on in my post “The Latest Constellation Research MDM Shortlist” where the analyst firm in question seemed to take a long time to understand that Oracle had left the MDM market.

Gartner’s Magic Quadrant reports are generally the most popular; their rankings often appear in corporate PowerPoint decks when businesses want to evaluate and select the right MDM solution that fits their needs.  And yet, I would argue that Gartner is more conservative in its approach.  For example, it took Gartner a long time to abandon the notion that there was a separate customer MDM and product MDM enterprise-level market, as I examined in my post “Who will become Future Leaders in the Gartner Multidomain MDM Magic Quadrant?

You’ll notice that the magic quadrant from 2017 had a very limited number of market players on it; it excluded several vendors who offer MDM via cloud subscription models who are now recognised as key players and who, in hindsight, should have been included on many shortlists back then.

So, when the next Gartner Magic Quadrant for MDM is published (currently scheduled for the end of November 2020, though I hear it may be pushed to January 2021), I would always recommend you take a look at who is not included as well as those who are, and ask yourself what information has led Gartner to rank the vendors the way they have.

In that sense, Gartner’s thoroughness can often work against them as a lot of the data used in the upcoming report will be from 2019.  Also, you should be aware that customer feedback is given by those who made the decision to implement a specific solution; I often hear a number of differing opinions from people across a business when they evaluate MDM solutions.

It’s also interesting to note how analyst firms differ between them.  Examples from the world of MDM include a dysfunctional relationship between Forrester and Informatica as well as between Gartner and IBM, and how Forrester, opposed to Gartner, has a much more favourable assessment of a new kind of MDM provider like Reltio.

Disclosure: I recently worked with Reltio on a webinar and a white paper.

Forrester’s Latest View on the MDM Market

Generic rankings of vendors on a market, like the Master Data Management (MDM) market, are in my eyes not very useful.

So, it is relieving that the recent Now Tech report format from Forrester does not do that.

The Now Tech: Master Data Management, Q4 2020 from Forrester was published last month. In here the vendors are grouped by size and some key selection criteria are stated for each vendor. This include:

  • Deployment mode which in Forrester lingo are functional segments covering public cloud, multi-cloud, on-premise and SaaS.
  • Geographic segments with percentage of revenue for North America, Latin America, EMEA (Europe/ Middle East/Africa) and APAC (Asia/Pacific).
  • Vertical market focus and sample customers.

You can access the report if you are a Forrester client or buy it from Forrester. Alternatively, you can have a free copy at the Prospecta site, as the MDO (Master Data Online) solution from Prospecta is included in the report. Link here.

How to Use Connected Master Data to Enable New Revenue Models

In today’s experience economy and in the age of digital transformation, there are two distinct ways you can use modern master data management to drive positive business outcomes:

  • Automating existing business processing so you can increase operational effectiveness, cut costs, reduce risk and drive incremental growth.
  • Developing new data-driven revenue streams that result in new substantial growth opportunities.

As customer centricity is vital to any digitisation project, so it must follow that improving the customer experience (CX) is a key objective of any digital transformation project.

Getting a comprehensive 360-degree view of customers in digital business processes involves the ability to connect customer master data with other master data entities, hierarchies, transactions, big data, and reference data.

As the diagram above shows, a connected and extended master data landscape (aka data hub) will give you the essential capabilities you need in order to understand your customers. Knowing your customers better allows you to develop better products, drive new streams of revenue, and deliver the best customer experience through hyper-personalization.    

Learn more in the white paper co-authored by Reltio and yours truly: Taking Customer 360 to The Next Level: Fueling New Digital Business

MDM / PIM / DQM Case Studies

The Disruptive List of MDM / PIM / DQM Solutions is growing both in terms of the solutions presented and the content provided on the list.

The latest piece of content is the Case Study List.

This is a list of case studies from innovative solution providers. The aim is to give inspiration for organizations having the quest to implement or upgrade their Master Data Management (MDM), Product Information Management (PIM) and/or Data Quality Management (DQM) capability.

The list is divided into industries, so you can have an overview of case studies from organizations comparable to your organization.

Check out the list here.

MDM Terms in Use in the Gartner Hype Cycle

The latest Gartner Hype Cycle for Data and Analytics Governance and Master Data Management includes some of the MDM trends that have been touched here on the blog.

If we look at the post peak side, there are these five main variant – or family of variant – terms in motion:

  • Single domain MDM represented by the two most common domains being MDM of Product Data and MDM of Customer Data.
  • Multidomain MDM.
  • Cloud MDM.
  • Data Hub Strategy which I like to coin Extended MDM.
  • Interenterprise MDM, which before was coined Multienterprise MDM by Gartner and I like to coin Ecosystem Wide MDM.

It is also worth noticing that Gartner has dropped the term Multivector MDM from the hype cycle. This term never penetrated the market lingo.

Another term that is almost only used by Gartner is Application Data Management (ADM). That term is still in there.

Who is in the MDM Landscape Q2 2020?

The new Information Difference MDM Landscape is out.

MDM Landscape Q2 2020

Talend is not in the landscape this year, which is natural as Talend do not promote MDM anymore. Viamedici and Veeva is not in there as they were last year. This may, as discussed under the 2019 MDM Landscape with other vendors, be because they have declined to participate.

Recurring vendors are positioned quite like last year. As the vertical axis is technology, including customer satisfaction, and the horizontal axis is market strength, there still seems to be two main groups of vendors. Best-of-breed MDM with higher customer satisfaction and mega-vendors with not so high customer satisfaction.

Stibo Systems sits between these two groups according to this report. In my current work at the consultancy firm Astrocytia we have some engagements where we assist our clients in getting much more business benefit from MDM and thereby with these cases we strive to push Stibo Systems towards the top-right corner.

Gaining customer satisfaction, not at least with larger market strength, is dependent on both the capabilities of the MDM vendor and the approach from the consultancy firm that assist with the wider MDM strategy and implement the solutions.

How to Create Great CX Using the Full Potential of MDM

Improved customer experience (CX) is a key driver for digitalization and having optimal Master Data Management (MDM) is a core prerequisite for being successful in providing customer experience.

First, MDM underpins your insights into:

  • Customer identity
  • Customer hierarchies
  • Customer locations
  • Customer transactions
  • Customer footprint on websites
  • Customer footprint in social media
  • Customer preferences
  • Customer privacy and data protection settings and rights

Next, MDM gives you the insight into how to provide a tailored product experience by managing the data supply chain from your suppliers/vendors to each of the customer touch points by:

  • Having your suppliers/vendors syndicating all the product-, service- and other information that is required by your customers
  • Transforming these data into the data structure that fits your customers
  • Consolidating all sources relevant for your customers
  • Enriching with your internal competitive information that delight and engage your customers
  • Customizing to each channel where you have a touch point with your customers
  • Personalizing utilizing rich and structured customer insight

PXM and CX

Learn more in an on-demand webinar hosted by Reltio – you can access the recording here,

Data Marketplaces, Exchanges and Multienterprise MDM

In the recent Gartner Top 10 Trends in Data and Analytics for 2020 trend number 8 is about data marketplaces and exchanges. As stated by Gartner: “By 2022, 35% of large organizations will be either sellers or buyers of data via formal online data marketplaces, up from 25% in 2020.”

The topic of selling and buying data was touched here on the blog in the post Three Flavors of Data Monetization

A close topic to data marketplaces and exchanges is Multienterprise MDM.

In the 00’s the evolution of Master Data Management (MDM) started with single domain / departmental solutions dominated by Customer Data Integration (CDI) and Product Information Management (PIM) implementations. These solutions were in best cases underpinned by third party data sources as business directories as for example the Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) world base and second party product information sources as for example the GS1 Global Data Syndication Network (GDSN).

In the previous decade multidomain MDM with enterprise wide coverage became the norm. Here the solution typically encompasses customer-, vendor/supplier-, product- and asset master data. Increasingly GDSN is supplemented by other forms of Product Data Syndication (PDS). Third party and second party sources are delivered in the form of Data as a Service that comes with each MDM solution.

Data Marketplaces and Exchange

In this decade we will see the rise of multienterprise MDM where the solutions to some extend become business ecosystem wide, meaning that you will increasingly share master data and possibly the MDM solutions with your business partners – or else you will fade in the wake of the overwhelming data load you will have to handle yourself.

The data sharing will be facilitated by data marketplaces and exchanges.

On July 23rd I will, as a representative of The Disruptive MDM/PIM/DQM List, present in the webinar How to Sustain Digital Ecosystems with Multi-Enterprise MDM. The webinar is brought to you by Winshuttle / Enterworks. It is a part of their everything MDM & PIM virtual conference. Get the details and make your free registration here.

MDM of Material and Parts Data

The Often-overlooked MDM Scenario

Most presentations of Master Data Management (MDM) solutions revolve around the scenario of having multiple data stores holding customer master data and the needed capabilities of federation and deduplication in the quest for getting a 360 degree of customers.

Another common scenario is the Product Information Management (PIM) theme, where the quest is to get a 360 degree of the products that is sold to the customers.

However, in for example the manufacturing sector there is a frequent and complex scenario around governing product master data before the products become sellable to customers.

In that scenario we usually use the term material as an alternative to product and we use the term parts for the products bought from suppliers as either components of a finished product, as materials used in Maintenance, Repair and Operation (MRO) and as other supplies.

MDM Capabilities for Material and Parts Data

Some of the key MDM capabilities needed in the material and parts data scenario are:

  • Auto-generated material descriptions which helps with identification and distinction between materials which leads to better utilization of the inventory. This capability can by the way also be used by merchants in reselling PIM scenarios as pondered in the post What’s in a Product Name?.
  • Advanced mass maintenance of material attributes which leads to improved accuracy and consistency and thereby better operational efficiency. Again, this capability is also useful in other MDM scenarios.
  • User friendly maintenance of complex material relationship structures as for example Bill of Material (BOM). This leads to less scrap and rework and improved compliance reporting. This capability can successfully be extended to other internally defined relationship structures in PIM and MDM.

Workflow Management and Data Governance

Handling material and parts master data is collaboration intensive with many business units involved as for example:

  • Procurement
  • Supply Chain / Logistics
  • Production
  • Research & Development
  • Finance

This means that operational efficiency can only be obtained through cross business unit workflows tailored to the data requirements and compliance obligations held by each business unit.

With the degree of enterprise data sharing needed this must be encompassed by data governance framework elements as:

  • Roles and responsibilities for data
  • Data policies and data standards according to business rules
  • Data quality measurement
  • A commonly shared business glossary

Solution Example: Master Data Online (MDO)

In my experience MDM of material and parts data is often done utilizing the ERP application with the shortcomings around data overview, workflow management and data governance that entail.

Therefore, it is good to see when an MDM solution that has the material and parts master data management covered as well as touched in the post Welcome Master Data Online (MDO) from Prospecta on The Disruptive MDM / PIM / DQM List.

The Master Data Online (MDO) solution was born around material and parts master data which is an refreshing exception from the many MDM solutions that were born either from the Customer Data Integration (CDI) solution branch or the Product Information Management (PIM) branch.

You can learn more about material and parts MDM at Prospecta and MDO here.

MDO Material and Parts

Welcome Master Data Online (MDO) from Prospecta on The Disruptive MDM / PIM / DQM List

There is yet a new featured entry on the Disruptive MDM / PIM /DQM List. Master Data Online (MDO) is the flagship product of Prospecta. The solution entered the market in 2008 with its unique ability to solve multiple problems of standardizing spare parts and has grown at a steady pace into a far more evolved and matured solution which focuses around multiple data solutioning across systems like SAP, Salesforce and other leading Enterprise Systems.

With the heritage from solving product master data issues in manufacturing MDO stands out from the crowd of MDM solutions that else have their heritage in Customer Data Integration (CDI) or Product Information Management (PIM). The coexistence with SAP that was part of the original heritage has along with the multi-domain MDM capabilities been developed to cover SalesForce and other popular applications you meet in most IT landscapes.

Besides the core MDM and coexistence with ERP and CRM applications MDO also have a Data Intelligence Workbench (DIW) and a component called MDO Fuse that is made to ease onboarding and provide workflow capabilities.

Learn more about Master Data Online (MDO) here.

Role of MDO