In my opinion, every mid-size to large organization should have a solution for master data management. Based on my observations, data quality issues have reached a pandemic level. Ironically, putting a “lipstick on the pig” with some cool visualizations appears to have a higher priority on the BI roadmap but it’s just masking the underlying issues. The focus should be on centralizing data management and improving data quality. I know this is easier said than done and the problem is further complicated by the proliferation of systems and corporate acquisitions. I know an organization which spent $8M (kid you not) on a MDM project with one of the most prominent management consulting companies and all they got back after two years was slides and documentation. It shouldn’t be this way of course. But start somewhere…. Start small, perhaps with putting under control all of these Excel spreadsheets that are floating around in your company (aka referenced data).
And you don’t have to break the bank for software. Luckily, SQL Server has a great toolset for master data management and data quality. Speaking of which, I’m happy to announce my latest training class: Applied Master Data Services and Data Quality. This two-day class is designed to help you become proficient with SQL Server 2016 Master Data Services (MDS) and Data Quality Services (DQS). IT and business users will learn how to design MDS models and extend them with business rules, attribute groups, and hierarchies. IT will learn how to integrate MDS with upstream and downstream systems and how to enforce secured access. Business users will learn how to use Excel to manage data with the tool they love most – Excel! Then, the class teaches how to create DQS knowledge bases, perform matching and cleansing tasks, and integrate DQS with MDS and SSIS. The class can be customized to target separately pro and business user audiences.