#ChangeManagement is currently one of the main challenges when discussing #datagovernance/reference data (#MDM)

Indeed, digital transformation involves the internal development of trust, granted to its ecosystem and change management is the key!

Here are 5 of the most often overlooked challenges related to master data adoption, along with 5 simple steps to approach MDM change management. 

5 Most Overlooked Challenges of MDM Adoption 

When it comes to MDM adoption, most of the obstacles come down to one overarching issue: the inability to determine your organization’s readiness before starting the project.

It is essential to remain realistic about readiness and prepare accordingly. That means :

#1 Assess your organizational culture / Determine maturity based on data

Assess openness and support within management (and those leading data initiatives throughout your organization)

Our projects begin according to your maturity. We distinguish 2 dimensions.

#2 Involve the company early and often.

Many MDM projects start as an IT project. That’s okay: in fact, IT should be involved at every step. However, engaging business stakeholders too late can lead to a disconnect with real problems and desired outcomes.

The process must be facilitated by creating a regular cadence of discussion and collaboration throughout the process.

#3 Validate the data and business processes that matter most.

Businesses process enormous amounts of data, and this is growing every year. But not all data has the same value for your business. Additionally, while many realize they have data problems, they do not appreciate the full extent of the associated challenges and process gaps.

The key is to focus on the results of solving your toughest problems; then tailor your data management efforts to those areas.

For example :

  • Examine your processes and try to identify either gaps in the available data or the time and effort required to obtain the data needed to make a decision.
  • Then think about how to capture this information in different contexts and develop models to help decision-makers.
  • Think about what could happen in your industry over the next five years and how you can build confidence in your benchmark data to align with these trends

#4 Isolate the company’s analytical capabilities.

One of the keys to MDM adoption is showing the value of the program to the business as a whole.

Data must flow seamlessly across the organization, with analytics capabilities built into the core business. This requires providing access to analytics capabilities and reporting with a platform through which users can easily access data.

#5 Have a suitable approach to avoid failure of determination

Finally, many MDM projects fail because they are unnecessarily complex.

On the other hand, some projects omit features that many users consider essential to their daily work. The key is to find a balance and find the right approach.

Une façon de relever ce défi consiste à évaluer l’état d’esprit actuel de vos utilisateurs.

  • Do you know what they think of the system currently in place?
  • Are there any custom features they plan to port over to the new system?
  • Do they understand the why of the MDM initiative?

The mindset assessment will help you set the stage for successful MDM adoption, as will the following five steps for approaching change management.

5 Steps to Start Your Change Management Process

#1: Define your business results

Every MDM initiative should start by defining your business outcomes. In other words, what are your high-level business goals and how can well-governed, centrally managed data help you achieve them? The key to this process is formulating a data strategy.

Why is a data strategy so important for change management? Because it defines the people, processes, policies and culture that will guide your data initiatives. And it helps your users and business groups work in agreement and alignment, not in silos or opposition.

Then, once you’ve defined a data strategy, it can be helpful to identify and select an MVP (minimum viable product) that meets your most relevant business outcomes. You can quickly deploy your MVP to show the value of the MDM program.

#2: Document risks

Consider the impact and risks to your data, processes and systems. Don’t forget to get feedback and suggestions from IT and business stakeholders.

#3: Determine ownership

Determining ownership is a crucial step.

A simple step is to designate an MDM project owner and sponsor.

#4: Set scheduling expectations

Be sure to create a reasonable schedule and communicate the rationale to business and IT stakeholders. If your MDM launch timeline is too short, you risk not preparing your organization and users. If it’s too long, you risk overwhelming and exhausting the team.

If you know your risks and establish ownership, it should be easier to determine a reasonable schedule that incorporates testing and adequate training without causing tension.

#5: Plan to scale

Remember: you don’t need to manage all your data, for every part of the business, at once.

Many companies wisely decide to start on a smaller scale and then scale the implementation over time to encourage business adoption.

Having an application with integrated change management and training is a good start, as it makes it easier to scale adoption across multiple business departments, geographies and beyond.

The good news is that when you choose a unified platform like Blueway, you can continuously improve processes and data by allowing manual correction (stewardship) and creating workflows to sustain the process (BPM).

Next Steps for Successful MDM Adoption

While it’s prudent to think about everything that could go wrong (i.e. your risks or challenges), it’s also important to remember everything that can go right. Adopting a new MDM system should be an exciting time for your business, and it can be when you take concrete steps toward successful change management.

The involvement of business lines at the heart of data governance projects is essential.

Opéra implements a specific change management process

  • Corresponding to your maturity
  • Transversal Empowering
  • Identifying the actors and responsibilities
  • Involving a data culture

To involve a business sponsor, there is nothing like presenting them with the advantages of an MDM system. They are multiple:

  • Have a reference for defining your business objects
  • In terms of KING, the intangible capital that is reference data to controlled quality is important
  • Overhaul (and centralize) business processes – allowing, if necessary, to move towards a Business Process Management approach…
  • Finally being able to have a 360 vision of your business objects through the IS

In return, the businesses must be aware of the necessary level of involvement that they must have in these projects both on the business definition (Data Owner) and on the reliability of the data and its propagation (Data Steward).