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8:45 - 9:30 Aaron Zornes


Conference Chairman Keynote: Bridging from 'System of Record' to 'System of Engagement' for Master Relationship Management


Aaron Zornes
Chief Research Officer, The MDM Institute


Session Description

Clearly, the “solid but boring” aspect of master data management (MDM) remains a key challenge for most enterprises.  While MDM purports to span the entire master data lifecycle, new dimensions such as Big Data, mobile, social, cloud and real-time are exerting tidal forces on the classic notion of MDM.  Moreover, IT leadership struggles when selecting MDM software because the solutions are diverse with no single vendor able to meet all requirements and use cases. Given the prevalence of multiple MDM brands and architectures as a result, two relatively newcomers (Data Governance and Graph Database) are proposing to unify these silo’ed worlds to overcome both organizational and technical issues as well as market dogma.

The mega vendor-centric MDM offerings thwart the notion of heterogeneous data and process integration, and often lack pro-active governance capabilities for end-to-end data lifecycle management.  Concurrently, best-of-breed and niche vendors look to exploit this vacuum (cross-mega vendor governance and relationship management) yet are stymied by lack of resources and market traction.  All vendors need to better focus on next-generation MDM requirements as we move from “system of record” to add “system of reference” and (ultimately) move into “system of engagement” wherein relationship-driven analytics form the foundation of MDM-innate, data-driven and context-driven applications to fully enable the digital enterprise.

Concurrently, mismatches in reference data (also called “enterprise dimensions”) affect the integrity of business intelligence reports and are also a common source of application integration failure. Due to the strategic nature of and difficulty to build/maintain custom reference data management (RDM) capabilities, savvy IT organizations and Finance departments are increasingly opting to buy and not build RDM solutions.

This plenary research analyst keynote will review strategic planning assumptions such as:

  • Determining what your organization should focus on in 2016-17 to initiate “master relationship management” via Data Governance & Graph Database
  • Planning to leverage Big Data & RDM as part of an enterprise MDM program
  • Understanding where MDM, RDM & Data Governance are headed in the next 3-5 years


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