Q
Problem solve Get help with specific problems with your technologies, process and projects.

Is it better to have a centralized or decentralized master data structure?

Should your master data be centralized or decentralized? Get an expert's take, plus find out how different MDM architecture styles affect your master data and MDM hub.

I just have a quick question. Which do you think is better — to have the master data (sales, plant, material, finance) centralized or decentralized? I am just thinking it is best that it is centralized to keep master data aligned to each other, but I'd love an expert's opinion.
A quick question, huh? I suppose you go to the Appalachian Trail for a "quick walk," and grab a "quick bite" at Le Cirque? But I'll give it a shot. The management of the data needs to be centralized, but where the data is persisted can be decentralized. I know that was quick, but like your question it's deceptively complex.

You see, as much as we like to focus on the platforms, data management — the tactics around defining and maintaining...

business rules, definitions and access to data — is the real hard part. Best-practice companies have learned that centralizing data management as an enterprise service is not only the most efficient way to support MDM, but a whole range of enterprise initiatives.

As for master data, it really does depend on whether you're using registry-style MDM to quickly match and link data across source systems, or a persistent approach that stores the data in a centralized hub. Each has its advantages and disadvantages. To understand which is best for your company — registry, persistent, or a hybrid of each — see my prior Q/A on MDM functional requirements .

This was last published in September 2009

Dig Deeper on MDM best practices

PRO+

Content

Find more PRO+ content and other member only offers, here.

Have a question for an expert?

Please add a title for your question

Get answers from a TechTarget expert on whatever's puzzling you.

You will be able to add details on the next page.

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

SearchBusinessAnalytics

SearchAWS

SearchContentManagement

SearchOracle

SearchSAP

SearchSQLServer

Close