How to get started with master data management

Forrester Research's Rob Karel reveals his tips for starting a master data management (MDM) initiative, including how and when to start evaluating vendors.

Despite what vendors may tell you, starting a successful master data management (MDM) initiative is not as easy as installing some software and hitting a button.

Significant preparation, including devising and implementing data governance rules and policies, for example, is a must for MDM to deliver on its promise of "a single version of the truth."

To help you get your MDM initiatives off on the right foot, recently spoke with Forrester Research analyst Rob Karel. Karel is an expert in MDM and other data management topics, including data governance and data quality, and he shares his tips for getting started with MDM.

In this 11-minute podcast, appropriate for both business and IT professionals, listeners will:


  • Learn why data governance – like determining data ownership and agreeing on common data definitions – is an essential first step in an MDM initiative (1:20).
  • Find out who in an organization should be involved in MDM and how to structure the group (2:10).
  • Get advice for evaluating your own internal data management needs at the beginning of the process (3:20).
  • Find out when and how to start evaluating MDM vendors (5:10).
  • Learn how to decide if you'll need to bring in outside consultants for the job (7:15).
  • Get advice for deciding which data domain to focus on when starting and MDM initiative (8:15).

About the speaker: Rob Karel is a Forrester Research principal analyst covering MDM, data quality management, metadata management, data governance, and data integration technologies, including ETL and EII. Rob has more than 14 years of data management experience working in both business and IT roles to develop solutions that provide better quality, confidence in, and usability of critical enterprise data. Prior to joining Forrester, he managed Intuit's enterprise data quality initiatives and supported the implementation of Intuit's customer master reference system. Prior to Intuit, Rob managed the design and development of customer master and attribute management solutions for Cisco Systems. Earlier, Rob was research manager for the Global Mergers & Acquisitions product group at what is now Thomson Financial Investment Banking.


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How to get started with Master Data Management

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