Master data management and data governance are among the most widely adopted IT strategies in recent years. This is due to the fact that both are critical for vital business outcomes such as 360-degree views of customers/products/suppliers, regulatory reporting and compliance, and in general treating data as an enterprise asset.
MDM is no longer a "fast follower" technology. It is now a mature solution providing tangible benefits for private and public sector organizations. The desired economic outcomes include new ways to drive down costs, enable better regulatory compliance, provide higher levels of customer satisfaction and to provide increased agility -- whether to add new channels or products or to prepare for and execute on mergers and acquisitions. Data governance is critical to achieving sustainable and effective MDM. Failure to execute data governance concurrently with an MDM program greatly decreases the probability of success and economic sustainability of MDM programs.
Why is 2012 a Pivotal Year for Your Career
Now is the time that "type A" IT professionals are plotting out their next career moves. MDM and data governance remain hot career areas during 2012, but what about the next 12 to 18 months? Many IT pros have been trained in the major MDM solutions, and some already have a year or more project experience. If you stake your two-to-three-year career plan to a specific MDM platform you should do fine. However, if you spice your resume up via reference data management, cloud-enablement and integration, and big data analytics (particularly for social CRM/MDM data), you may have enhanced your compensation potential by 30 percent or more. However, you will also be a "data integration pioneer," and we all know that pioneers are risk-takers and often suffer. But you can still be a "fast follower" IT pro by monitoring such MDM-related areas and adding them to your skills portfolio – rather than risking your near term sanity and job prospects exclusively in such new areas!
MDM is both pervasive and pandemic. Over the past seven years as conference chairman for the global event series MDM & Data Governance Summit, I have observed hundreds of MDM implementations in almost every industry around the world ranging from very large, highly heterogeneous distributed enterprises to midsize, mostly homogeneous centralized/local enterprises. In this same time frame, more than 6,000 IT professionals have attended our workshops and tutorials in London, Frankfurt, Madrid, Moscow, New York, San Francisco, Singapore, Sydney, Tokyo and Toronto.
During the first quarter of 2012, analysts at the MDM Institute reviewed more than 750 MDM and data governance case studies as part of the process to arrive at 10 strategic planning assumptions. This 2012-13 “MDM & Data Governance Roadmap” should serve as a guide to help focus efforts for MDM programs.
The bottom line is that MDM is quickly broadening its attractiveness both as a key enabler of strategic business initiatives as well as tactical P&L initiatives. More so than service-oriented architecture or business process management experience, a very large number of IT pros are riding the cresting wave of MDM and data governance. Just check your job sources for these keywords and browse the number of people (and positions offered) for these two key areas in LinkedIn groups and you will have confirmation. As of 2012, MDM is no longer fast-follower technology strategy but is clearly a business strategy for the masses.
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