Organizations realize the importance of master data management, along with the management of data quality, data security, data entry, data control, and data integration. Without clean, accurate, and validated data, it is difficult to derive value from the data and use it to make smarter business decisions.
The first step is to assemble the right team, get organizational buy-in on a data governance strategy and budget, and then evaluate master data management solutions. But selecting a master data management solution is as challenging as finding a reliable partner for this journey.
At To-Increase, we have a Master Data Management suite for Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance & Supply Chain Management (D365 F&SCM - formerly known as Finance & Operations). Our interactions with our customers have helped us gauge what they are usually looking for when it comes to a master data management solution, and that has helped us strengthen our portfolio and roadmap.
This blog will cover the top considerations to keep in mind while evaluating a master data management solution to help you find the right partner.
Top 8 considerations to keep in mind while evaluating master data management solution providers
Based on the "Master Data Management (MDM) Market” (2023-2028) report, “the global Master Data Management (MDM) market size is projected to reach USD 10940 million by 2028, with a CAGR of 12.9% during 2022-2028”.
Since more and more companies realize the importance of implementing a data governance strategy and using solutions that can help them achieve their vision, we have put together a list that will help companies evaluate master data management solution providers.
1. Scalable solution
According to Statista, the average amount of data created, captured, copied, and consumed globally will have reached 120 zettabytes in 2023. As your organization grows, your data will grow with you too. If you need to manage data synchronization, quality, and master data management distribution, you need to identify a solution that can scale with you.
2. Strong product roadmap vision
While there are mature solutions available in the market, technology is constantly evolving. So, newer players can always disrupt the market with versatile, user-friendly solutions at affordable rates. Therefore, whether a solution has been the top-rated solution on Gartner or just rising on the horizon, the solution provider that has a strong product roadmap and is open to customer feedback will be a better contender for your company.
3. Support for implementation and services
Implementing Master Data Management solutions takes time and organizational change management and buy-in. Even more so if you do not have a data governance strategy. An MDM Solution provider that can provide a consulting service with knowledgeable experts to guide you over and above the solution to help you with complex scenarios and use cases is more likely to make the cut. A tip here would be to request a demo for your most critical use cases when you are evaluating solutions.
4. Product functionality and performance
Is the master data management solution that you are evaluating secure? Is it easy to synchronize with your ERP and can it integrate with all your business systems and applications? Does it simplify and help you improve your processes across the data lifecycle from creation to publishing?
The product features, ease of use, and performance are important things to keep in mind while considering master data management solutions. The solution you might be considering could be the top-rated solution online but not flexible or easy to use for your organization.
Master data management software investment needs flexible budgets and an organization buy-in. Some master data management platforms are priced on the number of integrations, number of companies, or have a fixed price based on the number of available features.
Other than licensing costs, you need to consider training and implementation support. If your data processes are complex, you will also need to consider full-time support. So, consider all these costs while evaluating master data management solutions. Because we know that this is usually the bottom line while evaluating solutions.
6. Flexible solution
A flexible data quality, data entry, and master data management solution will allow you to restrict data fields, make important fields mandatory, add guidelines and validate data with ease. If you have a flexible strategy, it is important to look for a tool that allows you to do this.
If you decide to revert or make changes after you activate a data quality rule or workflow, then a solution that allows you to do this with just a few clicks will be easier to manage in the long run. A data governance strategy, if not flexible, can be hard to execute, as you might have to change things based on feedback from different business units managing individual business processes.
7. What other offerings are available?
Other than MDM, your organization might have other challenges that they are facing. For example, you might need to look at solutions that help you enhance security, derive better business intelligence, or need to help you exchange business-critical documents using electronic data interchange (EDI).
If you can find one provider that can help you with multiple challenges, it might be worth your organization’s time and resources to consider such an organization rather than outsource several solutions from multiple independent solution providers (ISVs) and coordinate with many more people than necessary.
8. Does the company specialize in the ERP you use?
Solutions that work across ERPs cannot help you deal with challenges specific to your ERP. While we understand that no solution is one-size-fits-all, at To-Increase, we have learned about the challenges in Microsoft Dynamics 365 Finance & Supply Chain Management ERP and have been developing solutions that help our customers improve data quality, data entry, data integration, and master data management using our MDM Suite while mitigating the challenges of the solution.
Since our solutions are built specifically for Microsoft ERPs, they use the same business logic, provide a familiar user experience, and are available in the D365 dashboard. Also, they work seamlessly with every Microsoft upgrade. We mention this because a solution that is not designed around the challenges of your specific ERP will take a longer learning curve to implement and use and will not work as seamlessly as a solution designed for a specific ERP.
Are you exploring master data management solutions for Microsoft Dynamics F&SCM?
One more thing to think about is whether your master data is in your ERP system. Most master data management solutions that are independent of the ERP or outside the ERP take a lot more time to implement and go-live with. Since our solution is an embedded solution for D365 F&SCM, we leverage the D365 data structure. So, if your organization has their master data within the D365 ERP our embedded Master Data Management suite would be a good fit for your organization. If not, we hope this list helps you identify the right fit for your organization.
Our solutions are scalable, built for the cloud, and also available on-premise. Since we have recently launched our Data Entry Workflow solution, we are constantly in touch with our customers to understand their problems so that we can improve our solutions. Customer feedback also helps us plan our roadmap while testing possibilities of improving our solutions using newer advanced technologies. Below is an overview video of our Master Data Management suite.
Although our solutions are designed keeping the business users in mind and are no-code, configuration-based solutions, we do provide support for implementation and beyond for organizations that need additional support. To learn more about our product features and benefits, download our factsheet from the link below.