Master Data Management Tools

Mastering data management is an important task often overlooked and placed on the back burner until it is needed most. Besides focusing on strategies that drive income, data management helps increase your savings and optimize your operational efficiency, particularly in the manufacturing, consumer packaged goods, and medical device industries.

But what are the best ways to master data management?

In this comprehensive guide, we'll answer critical questions such as "What is a master data management tool?" "What are some MDM tools examples?" and explore the top master data management tools that the competitive landscape has to offer.

Let's get started.

What Is Master Data?

Master data is a building block that forms the foundation of your business operations. Sometimes, master data can be referred to as "core data" or the information your brand needs to have a smooth operational efficiency in place.

Master data includes vital information such as customer details, prospects, suppliers, site locations, organizational hierarchies, and financial charts of your accounts. Master data is not to be confused with transactional data that records specific business transactions.

Master data provides a comprehensive view of information and partnerships crucial to your business's going concern.

Who Owns Master Data?

Taking care of the integrity of master data is the entire company's responsibility. Ownership will typically involve a collaborative effort between business stakeholders and IT experts, who confer with each other on subject matter that ensures accuracy, uniformity, and semantic consistency.

This partnership makes sure that everyone has the proper access to master data and that it is reliable enough for decision-making.

Master data examples include customer profiles containing given and preferred names, last-known addresses, and the most up-to-date contact information.

This data remains relatively static and unchanged, which provides a dependable foundation for your customer-facing teams to build out customer interactions, marketing efforts, and relationship management.

Some other examples include supplier information, organizational hierarchies, and financial charts of accounts that form these master data elements, which help you and your team make better decisions based on data-driven insights.

What Are the 3 Types of Master Data?

There are multiple types of master data that are unchanging in your organization. Three primary and common types of master data are customer data, product data, and financial data. Here are examples of these types of data in detail:

  • Customer data contains contact details for both existing customers and prospects. This important customer information forms the relationships and conversations that the customer-facing teams have in customer relationships and includes names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses - all important for Customer Relationship Management (CRM).

  • Product data are various details related to products offered by your business. This can include unique identifiers like SKUs (stock-keeping units), product specs, descriptions, and the important bill of materials. Your product data helps in managing and organizing the company's offerings. This is why Product Information Management (PIM) is necessary.

  • Financial data refers to the standard financial information necessary for reporting and analysis. For example, this includes data related to revenue, expenses, profits, deductions, payroll, tax installments, and other financial metrics or information that your finance and accounting team uses to make informed business decisions.

Some companies may also include other types of data in their master data management (MDM) process, such as employee details, location information, asset records, materials inventory, or supplier information.

More data doesn't necessarily mean that brands can evolve quicker, but better data management means more applicable scenarios to that information.

Why Master Data Management is Important?

Master data management (MDM) is extremely important for your business because it keeps all the important data organized and consistent across the whole company. The most important factor contributing to this is that it acts like a centralized hub for the whole company, giving everyone the confidence to use it well.

With MDM software, you can gather data from different places and combine it in one spot. This saves time and avoids mix-ups that can happen when data is scattered around, preventing data silos and fragmentation of important information that needs to be managed more carefully for marketing, compliance, and manufacturing.

MDM also helps make sure that all the data is accurate and follows the same rules. Data governance is a huge part of MDM. It should contribute to an entire methodology that unites the company together to make sure the integrity of the data is not compromised.

A remarkable specialty of MDM is that it encourages teamwork and sharing. Everyone in the company can access the same data, making it easier to collaborate and make decisions. You can delegate responsibility to your team and shareholders, and they will rise to the occasion to contribute as subject-matter experts (SME) on the topic. In this way, you can remain compliant and ensure everyone is doing their part correctly.

Five Core Functions of MDM

MDM offers many benefits to companies that use it, mainly as an enterprise-wide solution. Here are the five main things it accomplishes:

  1. Single view of all master data: MDM strategies gather all the important data from different parts of the company and put it together in one place. This gets rid of any confusion or data silos, which is where information is stored with one department and not shared with others. This practice prevents timely access to updates and version control.

  2. Data governance: MDM sets up rules and procedures to make sure all the data follows the same standards. MDM makes it like having a guidebook for how to handle information, making everything more organized and consistent.

  3. Improved data quality: With MDM, data is checked and cleaned up to make sure it's accurate and reliable. This helps avoid mistakes and ensures that everyone is working with the correct and most up-to-date information.

  4. Easier data analysis: MDM makes it simpler to analyze data and spot trends. Having everything in one place makes it easier to understand the information, enabling your team to make better decisions based on the insights.

  5. Potential for machine learning or artificial intelligence: MDM lays the groundwork for using and upskilling your staff on advanced technologies like machine learning or AI. These modern tools can help automate tasks and make smarter decisions based on the data collected through MDM.

Master Data Management Process

Master data management (MDM) may seem like a complex process, but most companies follow a similar path to get it done right. While there are various ways to get things moving along, here's a breakdown of the typical steps and methodology:

  1. Define master data for your business: Start by figuring out what information is most important to your company's operations. This will include the core three types of master data: customer details, product information, financial data. It should also include any other relevant data, such as employee information and data required for compliance with your industry’s regulatory bodies.

  2. Identify all sources of master data: Next, track down where this information is coming from. It might be stored in different systems, databases, or even spreadsheets across different departments. The best way is to engage team leads and department heads to have their direct reports upload all information into a cohesive space for review.

  3. Document who handles the data: Record who's responsible for creating, updating, and using this particular aspect of master data. Doing this helps ensure accountability and consistency in how the information is properly managed with the appropriate controls and SMEs on the job.

  4. Analyze existing master data: Use this opportunity to take a deep dive into your current data to understand its structure and any significant discrepancies. Doing this early on in the process will help you identify inconsistencies and areas for improvement.

  5. Appoint master data owners: Designate specific individuals or teams to oversee different master data sets. Having a dedicated owner who is specifically tasked with this helps maintain data quality and resolve issues more efficiently.

  6. Establish data governance structure: Develop rules and processes to govern how master data is handled across the organization. This creates a strong master data management framework for maintaining consistency and integrity in your data management practices.

  7. Create the master data model: Build a blueprint for how master data will be structured and organized throughout the business. This model guides data cohesion and alignment with business objectives within a structured topology.

  8. Choose an MDM solution: Evaluate different master data management software options and select one that fits your company's needs and budget. The right solution should simplify data management and support your overall MDM strategy. (We'll get more into detail about MDM examples later in this guide.)

  9. Implement the MDM solution: Deploy and roll out the chosen MDM solution and put your new data management processes into action. This step may involve training employees, migrating data, and configuring the software to meet your requirements.

  10. Continuous improvement: Monitoring and regularly reviewing your data governance practices address any discrepancies or issues that arise. Developing a regular review cadence involves looking for opportunities to enhance your MDM processes over time. Continuous monitoring and refinement are critical to maintaining data quality and effectiveness in the long run.

What Are Master Data Management Tools?

MDM tools are parts of a larger puzzle involving your strategy toward master data management. A tool should be an extension of your team, bringing out the best in them and filling in any gaps with automated deployment, upskilling, and making repetitive tasks easier so that your team can focus on what they do best.

Top data management tools are often in the form of software programs that are designed to bring together and organize important data from different parts of a company. They provide the confidence and peace of mind necessary for everyone to see the same information and that it's correct.

These tools often work with other software systems where data is kept, making it easy to share and integrate information between different programs.

While MDM tools are powerful, they're usually best for large enterprises with a lot of complicated data and the need for many bells and whistles. SMBs might find that tools like Product Information Management (PIM) or CRM systems are enough for their needs.

Using an MDM tool requires teamwork between different parts of the company, like the business and IT sides or the compliance and marketing departments. They must work together to set up and keep the software running smoothly while providing an easy-to-access platform that makes it easier for non-subject experts to explain the benefits to clients and prospects.

Deciding to get an MDM tool depends on how big and complicated your company's data is. More straightforward tools like PIM, CRM, or Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) systems are good alternatives for your brand to keep its critical data in order.

What Tools Are Used in Data Management?

MDM platforms are among the most important tools that are used in data management. An MDM tools list will differ based on the different master data management vendors. A master data management example is software that keeps track of all of your critical information in one single source of truth.

A large pain point a data management tool must solve is centralizing all data into one.

What Is an Example of an MDM?

Master data management service providers vary significantly across the board and contain some nuanced differences that help companies thrive. When conducting your research, you may come across many different examples.

To narrow it down, here is a list of the top 10 master data management tools, and some strong alternatives if you aren't a large enterprise:

MDM Software Solutions

Companies have various MDM solutions to choose from, each offering unique features and capabilities. Some of the most common MDM solutions in the market include Stibo Systems, Informatica, PiLog MDRM, TIBCO, Profisee, SAP, IBM, Reltio, Oracle, and Microsoft.

These solutions are tailored to meet large enterprises' complex data management needs, and you may have heard of many of these players before.

They like to work with dedicated brands and require a lot of back and forth between account management teams to deploy and integrate within your ecosystem.

When conducting your due diligence, it's best to take a look at master data management tools Gartner reviews, as well as G2 reviews before making a decision.

PIM Software Solutions

Other than standalone MDM solutions, some PIM solutions also offer MDM functionality while being intuitive and much more helpful to your brand. Three notable PIM tools in this category are Pimcore, Syndigo, and Lumavate. Let's compare them down below:


  1. Open-Source: Pimcore is an open-source platform, offering flexibility and customization options for businesses without licensing fees, letting you pay for what you need.

  2. Comprehensive Features: Pimcore provides a broad range of features for managing product information, digital assets, and customer data in one platform.

  3. Complexity: Pimcore has a steeper learning curve for users unfamiliar with the platform's intricacies due to its extensive features.


  1. Data Syndication: Syndigo is a master in data syndication, making it easy to distribute product information across all channels equally.

  2. Industry Expertise: The solution focuses on a few key niches, notably in the retail and consumer packaged goods industries.

  3. Limited Integration: Syndigo's benefits are great for its native functionalities, but integration can be a challenge with specific third-party or in-house solutions.


  1. Comprehensive: Lumavate provides an all-in-one platform for managing product data and digital assets as well as creating digital product experiences.

  2. Easy to use: With its user-friendly interface, Lumavate makes it simple for your marketing team to centralize and manage valuable data.

  3. Smooth integration: Lumavate includes more than 40 out-of-the-box integrations and can be set up in less than a day.

  4. Very Cost-Effective: Compared to other platforms, Lumavate is 75 percent more cost-effective than comparable solutions without compromising on deliverables.

  5. Designed With You in Mind: Lumavate caters to manufacturing, CPG, and medical device companies, making it a versatile option for your industry.

PIM vs. MDM: What's the Difference?

A Product Information Management (PIM) solution helps to organize and control product details and digital assets like images, user manuals, troubleshooting guides, and videos. This information is crucial for various things like online product listings, published catalogs, campaigns, brand portals, events, and marketing materials.

The best PIM tools integrate well with Digital Asset Management (DAM) tools and Digital Experience Platforms (DXP) to make your physical products come to life on all channels.

Master Data Management (MDM) gathers all the important data across a whole business, not just about products. It's an extensive system that requires many more working hours to fully set up and integrate.

While MDM is helpful for large companies, PIM is more straightforward and focused, making it easier for marketing and sales resources so that teams can communicate more clearly with your manufacturing and design departments.

Lumavate: Your All-in-One Product Experience Management Platform

Lumavate turns your physical products into digital product experiences, called a Product Experience Management (PXM) platform. With Lumavate, your company can handle everything related to its digital product experiences. It's got all the tools you need, including a built-in PIM solution to organize product details, DAM for images and videos, and a DXP for creating great stunning digital experiences.

Lumavate comes equipped with a growing number of out-of-the-box functionalities. It also lets you send customizable text messages and build forms and includes over 40 integrations. It's an all-in-one solution perfect for those making and selling physical products. Lumavate helps you manage your product data and digital assets, update digital experiences, send targeted text messages, and collect registrations in one easy-to-use platform.

The best part? Lumavate gives you all this at a fraction of the cost of other platforms with transparent pricing plans. And it's not just more affordable; it offers more functionality, too. With Lumavate, you get everything you need to take your digital product experiences to the next level, and it can be set up in less than a day.

Demo Lumavate for free today to learn more about how you can gain a solid competitive advantage.

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Meet with one of our experts to see how easy it is to centralize your product data, manage digital assets, and create digital product experiences. Trust us…you’re going to be wowed.