Master Data Management (MDM) Tools by Microsoft

  • shamshad.ali

    Hall of Fame

    Points: 3850

    I have different data sources, applications having similar customer data. I want to sync them across them so that we do not have to find one customer in specific datasource/application and place all customers profile under one master database. How do Microsoft provide solution for this? any MDM DB tool y Microsoft available? Please share details.

    Further queries

    1- How much easy is this tool to adopt use and develop?

    2- Free or licensed?

    3- Could support Oracle/DB2/MySQL/SQL Server and any else?

    4-Interface? browser based or desktop etc.

    Please share your knowledge.

     

    Shamshad Ali

  • Lowell

    SSC Guru

    Points: 323417

    I may be jaded on this one.

    I have seen three separate start-and-fail-to-implement initiatives to use Master Data Management at my current work location,and a total of half a dozen implementations that I've seen in my career.

    MDM is hard to implement, as the tools are primitive at best.

    Basic issues, like what deciding what is the one true source, or the true name for a given element stall projects, who wait for business decisions to decide the "best name";

    because of those stall issues , high turnover of development of resources occur, new resources try to take up where the previous team left off, decide to restart the process to fit the new developers analysis.

    In all all I've seen  have resulted in just wastes of time. I've never been in a shop where it was implemented to any degree where it was useful.

    Dimension tables  in the datawarehouse which point varied elements to a common dimension have always been better, in my opinion

    Lowell


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  • Steve Jones - SSC Editor

    SSC Guru

    Points: 716274

    Microsoft has MDS and Profisee is a company started by ex-MS people doing a similar thing.

    MDM is a good idea, hard to get working in any environment. Mostly because it's hard to get devs to link to it, hard to get someone to maintain it, and hard to ensure discovery of the service as staff turns over and new applications come online.

    While good in the hypothesis stage, I really feel this is one of those items that doesn't work well in practice.

  • DinoRS

    SSCrazy

    Points: 2533

    Microsoft has - as pointed out before - Master Data Services

    1 - Use with Browser or Excel, Develop? Well you have to create Models which will be mapped to Tables in a DB ...

    2 - Fully Licensed SQL Feature it is.

    3 - This runs on MSSQL so yes SQL Server is supported, no idea what you would like to see with Oracle and the others but if you can work with different data sources you should be able to do something with it regardless the DB System.

    4 - Web based and Excel Plugin, APIs are available, too

     

    @ Steve it was rather easy and quickly done linking something to MDS as dev, imagine you get a list of product parts (let's say 100k for a starter) and the source system has some incorrect data (which you cannot change at the source) and you face 2 Options: make some sort of self-service available for the business to sort their own mess out or receive n E-Mails per Day that Item XY is actually XYX but whoever initially created the product part was sleeping. Which do you consider harder? Convert nvarchar (which is what MDS unfortunately still mostly does) to <anything> or work through those E-Mails?

    Bear in mind: These E-Mails would come from business users who have no clue about IT for most of the part, Excel "can" be managed somehow by most of these users.

  • Steve Jones - SSC Editor

    SSC Guru

    Points: 716274

    It's less about the process of using Excel, and more that the scale of getting MDS integrated with other apps, getting business users used to making these changes, and ensuring everyone knows this exists in a large, diverse, staff-turnover challenged environment.

    This absolutely is the best thing to do, but it's hard from a human standpoint to achieve this coordination. Those that do, love it. Most find it becomes something they struggle with.

     

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