Webinar survey shows increase in reporting accuracy is primary expected benefit of master data management initiatives

Expert Forum Encourages Business-Led Master Data Management as a Key Component to Successful Data Governance

BURLINGTON, Mass. & LONDON, Uk., Dec. 14, 2005 -- A survey of attendees to an online expert forum on data governance cited increased accuracy of reporting and business intelligence as the primary benefit expected from master data management (MDM) and data governance initiatives. Participants were polled while attending a panel featuring industry experts from Kalido, IBM, Knightsbridge Solutions and Ventana Research entitled, "Master Data Management Comes of Age Part II: Expert Forum on Data Governance," hosted by Kalido, a provider of enterprise data warehousing and master data management software. A recording of the webinar can be accessed online at:

The MDM expert panel on data governance best practices, moderated by Mark Smith, Ventana Research CEO and senior vice president of research, called for organizations to manage and integrate data governance into their existing structure and for business managers to take active ownership of the data. The panel also concluded that management of master data by the business should be an important foundation for effective data governance.

When asked about expected benefits from master data management and data governance initiatives, 59 percent of respondents cited the expected increase in the accuracy of reporting and business intelligence as the primary benefit. For the same question, more than one-quarter (28 percent) selected the improvement of operational efficiency as the primary expected benefit, while only eight percent cited cost reduction of existing IT investments.

In addition, 65 percent of respondents indicated that they either currently manage or plan to manage within the next 12 months master data as a part of their data governance initiatives. This corroborates a previous survey taken at the Kalido User Group in September in which 56 percent of the Global 2000 respondents cited improvement of data governance as the reason master data management (MDM) is needed (

The poll's more than 150 respondents represented mostly Global 2000 organizations across a variety of industries including aerospace/defense, consumer packaged goods, financial services, government, healthcare, high-tech, manufacturing, pharmaceutical, telecommunications and others.

"Data governance encompasses master data management, but also includes other things such as data quality," said panelist Dr. David Waddington, vice president and research director - Master Data Management and European IT Research, Ventana Research, during the discussion.

Added panelist Daniel Gaines, senior principal and chief technology officer for the Health and Life Sciences practice at Knightsbridge Solutions: "Master data is the glue that connects all your business activities. It's one of the most important places to start your governance process."

Managing master data - business definitions of entities such as customers, brands, suppliers and financial indicators - is often a crucial first step for organizations seeking to actively manage their corporate data through data governance. As the amount of master data continues to proliferate across multiple operational systems, each with differing codes and coding structures, corporations are struggling to obtain a consolidated view of performance.

Said panelist Winston Chen, consultancy practice manager, North America, Kalido, "Data governance and master data management initiatives improve information quality significantly - even prior to arriving into a data warehouse, thereby significantly reducing the amount of integration work while increasing the accuracy of your business intelligence."

In discussing best practices, the panel cautioned that neither master data management nor data governance can be effective without a strong business owner to champion and manage the project.

"The creation of a team around data governance and also the appointment of a leader, someone like a chief data officer, are critical steps in getting started with data governance," commented panelist Paula Wiles Sigmon, product marketing director, IBM Information Integration Solutions. "One of the responsibilities for that team and that officer would be institutionalizing data quality so that MDM and data governance become an interest and a responsibility for everyone throughout the organization."

Additionally, the panel concluded:

-- The organization structure for governance needs to be managed and integrated into existing structure - both business and IT - to be effective

-- Senior business buy-in and support is essential as the data being managed is a valuable business asset

-- Data governance and master data management initiatives can often be most effective by identifying smaller key areas (a "pilot" approach) to establish organizational structure and ownership before tackling the enterprise roll-out

-- A "one-size-fits-all" solution usually doesn't work as different industries and subject areas can require different approaches and processes

-- Rather than trying to use consensus as a method to get agreement, a better approach is often to put out a "straw man" for processes and definitions and force feedback within certain time limitations

Concluded moderator Mark Smith of Ventana Research: "The challenges that organizations face include multiple versions of the truth, poor data quality, and, in some cases, just plain wrong information. Master data management plays a critical and required role for data governance. It is a blueprint to ensure that the context and the definitions of the data are used across all your systems."

About Kalido

Kalido provides adaptive enterprise data warehousing and master data management software to Global 2000 companies. The KALIDO(R) application suite (KALIDO) delivers consolidated views of enterprise performance and can rapidly adapt them to major changes in the business such as mergers and acquisitions, market consolidation, or new regulatory requirements. This improves the speed and accuracy of management and financial reporting without the cost and delay of operational system standardization. Kalido customers who have measured the business benefits of their projects have typically found they have derived annual savings of millions, and in some cases tens of millions, of dollars through improved management of their company performance and reduction of IT costs.

Kalido customers include some of the largest companies in the world, such as BP, Cadbury Schweppes, HBOS plc, Intelsat, Labatt Breweries of Canada, Merial, Owens Corning, Philips, Royal Dutch/Shell Group of Companies (Shell) and Unilever. These companies and many others use Kalido's award-winning software in over 100 countries for their enterprise-wide data warehousing and master data management projects.

A privately held company, Kalido is headquartered in Burlington, Mass. and London, UK. More information about Kalido can be found at:

About Ventana Research

Ventana Research is the leading Performance Management research and advisory services firm. By providing expert insight and detailed guidance, Ventana Research helps clients operate their companies more efficiently and effectively. These business improvements are delivered through a top-down approach that connects people, processes, information and technology. What makes Ventana Research different from other analyst firms is a focus on Performance Management for finance, operations and IT. This focus, plus research as a foundation and reach into a community of over two million corporate executives through extensive media partnerships, allows Ventana Research to deliver a high-value, low-risk method for achieving optimal business performance. To learn how Ventana Research Performance Management workshops, assessments and advisory services can impact your bottom line, visit

About IBM

IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. Drawing on resources from across IBM and key Business Partners, IBM offers a wide range of services, solutions and technologies that enable companies to take full advantage of the on demand era.

The need to access, manage and deliver information more effectively is driving rapid change in the IT marketplace. Companies grappling with increased business demands and government compliance mandates are striving to capture and integrate data in a more seamless, real-time fashion across their enterprises, regardless of the underlying format or structure. IBM's approach combines industry expertise with open standards, advanced storage systems and software to integrate, manage, secure and deliver information in the form of services that perform business functions. For more information about IBM, visit

About Knightsbridge Solutions LLC

Fortune 500 companies and other large data-centric organizations turn to Knightsbridge for solutions to their most difficult data problems-- problems rooted in massive data volumes or complex information challenges. Knightsbridge delivers actionable and measurable business results that inform decision-making, optimize IT efficiency, and improve business performance. Focusing exclusively on the information management disciplines of data warehousing, data integration, information quality, and business intelligence, Knightsbridge delivers practical solutions that reduce time, reduce cost, and reduce risk.

Knightsbridge serves clients in financial services, insurance markets, health and life sciences, retail and consumer products, high technology, manufacturing, telecommunications, energy, federal government, and other industries. Visit Knightsbridge online at

Lorita Vannah, +1 781 202 3211

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