What is master data?
Organizations deal with a variety of data – transactional, unstructured, heirarchical, metadata and master data. The common business entities – people, things, places and concepts are the master data. Master data defines the top level business objects. According to Gartner
“Master data is the consistent and uniform set of identifiers and extended attributes that describes the core entities of the enterprise including customers, prospects, citizens, suppliers, sites, hierarchies and chart of accounts.”
Master data enables sharing information among the enterprise. It provides the common vocabulary for transactions and operations. It is the foundation over which all business applications are built.
Why should organizations manage master data?
Incorrect master data leads to utter chaos. As master data is the single source of truth for the enterprise, inaccurate master data results in loss of revenue, poor analytics, operational inefficiencies and failure to comply with regulations. Master data is generally scattered in different organizations, and it needs a collective effort from IT and business to define, correct, save, consume and continuously update master data.
In the banking, financial and insurance sector(BFSI), more regulations and tightening markets mean there is an ever growing pressure to increase revenue through existing customers and discover opportunities to cross-sell and up-sell. Stricter KYC and AML norms can only be achieved through cleaner master data.
Health and Life Sciences reply on master data for regulatory compliance like physician spend and to reduce drug discovery time. Accurate information on prescribers, customers and affiliates improves sales, customer service, order-to-cash and rebate management processes.
For government organizations, unifying citizen information leads to easy roll out of benefits, manage security, combat terrorism and analyze and formulate policies.