Considering the transformative effects of Master Data Management, (MDM) it’s easy to get excited about the ROI of an implementation. Then, worry sets in. You hear stories about failed initiatives or projects that took years to complete. Meanwhile, you’re feeling pressure to deliver quick value to justify the investment.
How do you ensure a successful launch while still returning the quick ROI that your stakeholders demand? The answer lies in leveraging the right solution implementation practices.
1: Be Prepared
Readiness is crucial to accelerate time to value. Coming to the table with a problem or pain point is a good start, but we encourage companies to define their data and make decisions around governance as early as possible.
Ultimately, you want to understand how data flows across your enterprise, with an idea of what you’d like your data rules to look like. For example, knowing you have a problem with sizing attributes isn’t the same as knowing where the disparity lives and how you want to fix it. Consider starting or continuing this process while your technical components are being built, so you can hit the ground running.
Call to action: Get organized – start documenting your current state as early as possible. The faster you do this, the sooner you can shift your focus to achieving future goals.
2: Take a Pragmatic Approach to Delivery
When you think about MDM best practices in the context of speed, things get a little tricky. Some ask the question, “can you really accelerate value while taking the time to do things right?” It’s a fair question, but the answer boils down to your ability to follow a pragmatic approach.
Through many dozens of solution implementations, Amplifi has developed a delivery methodology that enables companies to adopt MDM best practices while still experiencing fast time to value. The backbone of our delivery structure starts with building a strong data model and establishing integrations. Then, we look at creating workflows, i.e., what will happen within those systems to consume and enrich the data. Finally, we discuss the business rules and user experience that bring the implementation together.
The magic that happens within this process is our secret sauce for delivering “quick wins” and sustainable growth. Instead of taking a big bang approach, we utilize a strategic “crawl, walk, run” process that segments a project into achievable chunks. By delivering tangible success upfront, it establishes confidence and sets the tone for long-term growth that’s manageable and trackable.
Call to action: Don’t attempt to boil the ocean. Instead, focus on the core components of your implementation. Remain agile in your approach and utilize expertise to identify tactics that support a pragmatic, phased delivery for more immediate ROI.
3: Consider an Accelerator
Some people are surprised to learn that there are accelerators in the marketplace that are proven to speed time to value for MDM implementations. For example, EnterWorks – one of the MDM providers we partner with – offers a data model workbook that can shave weeks off a deployment, even months in some cases. In the digital age, this time s can make a substantial difference to a company’s bottom line.
Call to action: Explore templates and tools that could help boost your time to value. Amplifi has created accelerators and documentation that are proven to speed launch times and ROI. Read more about using Amplifi’s Xcelerator here.
4: Don’t Underestimate the User Experience
Many companies make the mistake of driving these projects out of IT, with a data-driven perspective that overlooks the user experience. When you fail to think about how users will use the system on a day-to-day basis, you risk creating deeper issues that require time and resources to revisit and rework.
On the flip side, when you get the user experience right – and users feel empowered using the MDM solution – they often become the biggest champions for the program, uncovering new use cases and opportunities for value across the organization.
So, if you want to really jumpstart your time to value, don’t forget to empower your users.
Call to action: Address the user experience as part of the core delivery structure. Realize that an MDM implementation creates big change, and that requires Change Management. Don’t stop with an easy-to-use UI – consider your processes for onboarding users and equipping them with the right education and training. You might be surprised at the difference this can make for time to value.
The Missing Link
Be prepared, be pragmatic, consider an accelerator, and prioritize the user – All four areas play an important role in speeding time to value. What’s often missing, however, is the expertise you need to meld together these techniques for a successful, value-driven implementation.
It’s not always easy to see the big picture when you’re deep in the weeds, which is why the right guidance is crucial. Drawing from years of successful implementations, we’ve developed proven methods and proprietary assets that help our clients ‘crawl, walk, run’ toward immediate value and long-term goals.
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