Your digital transformation efforts won’t succeed without great master data—avoiding the pitfalls

By Scott Taylor on Jun 15, 2021

Digital transformation (DX) spending is grabbing an increasing share of IT budgets due to the pandemic. Research from IDC predicts that DX spending will jump from 36% of all ICT (information and communication technology) investment last year to more than 50% by 2023. Are you maximizing the return on your DX investment?

In this last entry in my five-part blog extravaganza, I wanted to remind you of why you’re spending all that money and give you some advice on how to avoid the data pitfalls that can derail your transformation efforts.

Even though the level of urgency has increased, conducting better business at scale remains the end goal at the heart of any DX investment. Obviously, DX success can look very different from company to company, with strategies and objectives tailored to maximize ROI for each business. But regardless of your business, chances are your DX spend goals fall into one of three categories: Trying to grow, improve, or protect your business.

To achieve any of these goals and maximize your return, you need to be able to trust your core business data—also known as master data—the data that describes your products, customer, suppliers, locations, assets, and the like. Why? Because each objective ties directly to key business processes and relationships that rely on that master data.

DX Spend Goals

Taking care of that data requires a master data management (MDM) program and the enabling technology that helps you get trusted data across all your internal systems and sales channels. And for that data program to succeed, you need to make it a strategic imperative that incorporates executive sponsorship, cross-functional participation, and ongoing investment in people, processes, and technology. When that fails to happen, the consequences can hamper or even derail your DX efforts.

I hope this blog series has given you a new perspective on what it takes to get the best ROI from your digital initiatives. And I hope that you’ve learned why establishing a solid foundation of trusted business data is critical for the ultimate success of any DX initiative. Whether your organization is investing in hot tech trends like IoT, big data, or digital twins, or the business is scaling up eCommerce, location-based marketing, or other customer-facing innovations—all roads lead back to your core data.

If you’d like to learn more, I’ve written a couple of eBooks that go into greater detail on this topic—one geared towards business leaders and the other for data teams. Both also contain links to deeper resources to continue your learning journey.

About the author

Scott Taylor

Scott Taylor, The Data Whisperer, has enlightening countless business executives to the strategic value of proper data management. He focuses on business alignment and the “strategic WHY” rather than system implementation and the “technical HOW.” As Principal Consultant for MetaMeta Consulting he helps Enterprises and Tech Brands tell their data story. An avid business evangelist and original thinker, he continually shares his passion for the strategic value of master data through industry events, public speaking opportunities, blogs, videos, whitepapers, podcasts, cartoons, puppets shows and all forms of thought leadership. His new book – TELLING YOUR DATA STORY: Data Storytelling for Data Management is available now. He lives in Bridgeport, CT where he often kayaks in Black Rock harbor. He can also juggle pins and blow a square bubble.

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