Open Framework, Information Management Strategy & Collaborative Governance | Data & Social Methodology - MIKE2.0 Methodology
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Archive for July, 2010

by: Bsomich
29  Jul  2010

Solving the MDM Problem is Not Easy.

Master Data Management is inherently challenging. Technology alone will not solve the problem – most of the root causes issues are process and competency-oriented:

  • Organisations typically have complex data quality issues with master data, especially with customer and address data from legacy systems
  • There is often a high degree of overlap in master data, e.g. large organisations storing customer data across many systems in the enterprise
  • Organisations typically lack a Data Mastering Model which defines primary masters, secondary masters and slaves of master data and therefore makes integration of master data complex
  • It is often difficult to come to a common agreement on domain values that are stored across a number of systems, especially product data
  • Poor information governance (stewardship, ownership, policies) around master data leads to complexity across the organisation

MDM solutions are often perceived by business and executive management as significant and costly purely due to infrastructure improvement efforts lacking well-defined tangible business benefits.  In order to avoid this, organizations should make sure to align this work with other initiatives that improve business processes, business intelligence, reporting and analytics, help reduce administrative overhead caused by redundant data entry, and provide other demonstratable benefits.

Data Quality Improvement requires more than Technology

Even a very sophisticated MDM technology solution cannot resolve data quality issues if proper standards and governance procedures are not in place. MIKE2.0′s open source solution for Master Data Management works in conjunction with solutions for Data Investigation and Re-Engineering and Data Governance to address historical issues, prevent new on-going data quality issues from occurring when possible and provide an enterprise exception processing framework for efficient data processing management.

Category: Information Development
2 Comments »

by: Bsomich
28  Jul  2010

Profile Spotlight: Henrik Liliendahl Sørensen

Henrik Liliendahl Sørensen

Henrik L. Sørensen is a Data Quality and Master Data Management professional also doing Data Architecture.

He has worked nearly 30 years in the IT business with a large range of business areas as government, insurance, manufacturing, membership, healthcare, public transportation and more.

Today he works with such companies as:

  • DM Partner, an innovative Danish provider of customer data management services and related reference data
  • Locus Informatik (part of Trapeze Europe), a specialized provider of solutions for public transportation
  • Omikron Data Quality, a leading European based data quality tool vendor

Prior to, he worked as an independent consultant with implementation of advanced data matching solutions at Dun & Bradstreet, Experian and other global as well as local leading service providers and organizations.

Sørensen is a charter member of IAIDQ (International Association of Information and Data Quality).

Connect with Henrik.

Category: Member Profiles
No Comments »

by: Phil Simon
26  Jul  2010

John Q. Public, Customer Service, and Information Management

I recently had some customer service issues with a few telecommunication companies. When calling the 800 numbers and speaking with reps about my issues (and there were quite a few), one thing kept frustrating me: receiving different answers to my questions from different people from the same company.

In large part, this stemmed from the fact that different customer service reps at each company had access to different data. Oh, how I loved the lines “I don’t have access to that information” and “That’s not my department, sir.” I don’t attribute this to issues related to permissions, rights, or security. Rather, I strongly suspect that each department kept its data in different systems. Because these systems didn’t talk to each other (or receive real-time updates from each other via some type of ETL tool), each rep would tell me the “current” information in his/her own system.

Now, it’s easy for me—and people like me—to view the world exclusively through our normal lenses. In my case, I’m a technology guy. People like me know more than a little about information management (IM). We understand things that some people don’t. (Of course, we often don’t understand things that we probably should, but that’s a conversation over beers sometime.)

IM types understand all too well why many large organizations struggle keeping tabs on their data. The usual suspects are:

  • An eye chart of disparate systems
  • End user inattention to detail
  • Organizational charts nowhere near transparent
  • Bifurcation of responsibilities among different departments
  • An inattention to data quality and data governance

John Q. Public

To most people reading this post (and similar posts on data- and management-oriented sites), this is old hat. But consider John Q. Public. He is no data management expert. He doesn’t know the difference between a house key and a primary key. He probably wouldn’t be able to define data quality or referential integrity.

But here’s the rub: It doesn’t matter.

John’s no idiot. He knows bad customer service when he experiences it. He may not know why a company is giving him the runaround, but he sure as heck doesn’t like it. What’s more, he now has new options for expressing his disgruntlement.

The social web has shifted the pendulum to the customer, empowering people in ways simply not possible even fifteen years ago. As Maria Ogneva writes, this “social customer” is not terribly tolerant of old school customer service practices. They don’t bite their tongue when things go awry. Ogneva writes:

With easy publishing tools, creating content is easy. With social sharing tools, it’s even easier to share this content with as many people as are in your network, and with platforms as good for discovery as Twitter is, you can even expose your message to anyone tracking that topic. So now, this same customer, who’s had opinions of her own about any and every product she’s ever used, can publish and share her thoughts with a mouse click. And if you are looking for information on that product, you can find what other people have already said.

Simon Says

Today customers have at their disposal many tools to communicate their happiness—or lack thereof. This has enormous implications for data management. Small businesses get a bit of a free pass here because they often know their customers via personal relationship. By contrast, few corporations can make that claim. When it comes to more effectively managing their data, large organizations need to get their acts together. The risk of not doing so: losing current and future customers.

Feedback

What do you think?

Tags:
Category: Enterprise Data Management, Information Management
6 Comments »

by: Bsomich
25  Jul  2010

Weekly IM Update.

 
 
 Untitled-1.jpg

Pay As You Benefit: A Natural Synergy Between MIKE2.0 and the Semantic Enterprise  

A recent post, “Pay as You Benefit‘: A New Enterprise IT Strategy,” describes an incremental approach to new information development activities premised on low-risk, affordable deployment chunks. The strategy is based on MIKE2.0’s Semantic Enterprise composite solution offering, and is a natural expression of MIKE2.0’s incremental deployment methodology. The strategy is especially well suited to the areas of information and knowledge management and information integration.

The pivotal difference in the ‘Pay as You Benefit‘ strategy is a shift from a closed world to an open world approach. Not only does this shift negate past IT hurdles of completeness and comprehensiveness — which have raised the stakes for IT initiatives for decades and are arguably a root cause of many failed projects — but it also is more suitable for enterprises needing to integrate outside information. Open world approaches can also comfortably embrace closed world ones, while the inverse is not true.

See further the full posting on the AI3:::Adaptive Information blog, a new addition to this site’s blogroll. Sincerely,

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This Week’s Food for Thought:

Collaborative Project Management  

It’s funny how old habits die hard. Consider the following:

  • I can’t seem to wean some of my tech-savvy friends off email when they should just know better.
  • My dad still checks his stock quotes on television.
  • Many are using old versions of Microsoft Excel or Project to manage their enterprise-wide system deployments, upgrades, and other information management (IM) endeavors.

To be sure, each of these tools was powerful “back in the day” and, truth be told, they still can get the job done. Sort of. With regard to MS Project and Excel, even “older” versions contain essential functionality when it comes to tracking resources, producing reports, etc.

Read the complete post.

How do you define your master data? 

There are numerous definitions for “master data” ranging from one sentence to a few paragraphs.  This is perhaps the most straightforward one I’ve come across:

Master data is the core data that is essential to operations in a specific business or business unit. - via Whatis.com

A clear and simple definition, yet a lot of companies often struggle to adhere to it when identifying and qualifying master data for their organizations. 

Why do you think this is?

Read complete post. Gartner Release New Enterprise Content Management Quandrant  

The report sees content integration (as might be used within customer communications management) and a service oriented approach as being something that will gain momentum to provide a service to specialist business requirements – such as the requirement for content in multi-channel one-one messaging, information availability to call centres, all within the customer communications management sphere.  Read complete post.

 
 

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Category: Information Development
No Comments »

by: Bsomich
22  Jul  2010

How do you define your master data?

There are numerous definitions for “master data” ranging from one sentence to a few paragraphs.  This is perhaps the most straightforward one I’ve come across:

Master data is the core data that is essential to operations in a specific business or business unit. - via Whatis.com

A clear and simple definition, yet a lot of companies often struggle to adhere to it when identifying and qualifying master data for their organizations. 

Why do you think this is? 

Although data is often looked at on a transactional basis, master data typically makes up a large a percentage of the data elements in any given transaction. Common examples of master data include:

  • Customer data (name, contact details, DOB, customer classification)
  • Locality data (physical address, postal address, geographical data)
  • Product data (item number, bill of materials, product codes)
  • Employee data (employee number, role, placement in organisational structure)
  • Partner data (partner name, classification)

It is not unusual for this same data to be held in dozens or even hundreds of applications across a large organization, and may be difficult to isolate and collect.   Much of the data has been held in legacy systems for years and may be held in a fashion where data is poorly integrated and at low levels of quality.  Many organizations have poorly implemented Data Governance processes to handle changes in this data over time.

MIKE2.0 offers an open source solution for managing master data that outlines many of the issues organizations have with identifying it.  

How do you define and qualify your master data?

Category: Information Development
1 Comment »

by: Bsomich
20  Jul  2010

Profile Spotlight: Antoine Frangieh

 

Antoine Frangieh

Antoine is a Knowledge and Information Management expert with an emphasis on Data Quality, Business Intelligence and Content Management (Document and Record Management).

He also has a fair knowledge of IT systems and a sound knowledge of public sector procurement processes.

Antoine has been involved in major European Commission DGs architecture definition and service evaluation, as well as an implementation of a data governance framework focused on Data Quality, and in a major data quality transformation and reporting processes definition and implementation at a private company.

Connect with Antoine.

Category: Information Development
No Comments »

by: Phil Simon
19  Jul  2010

Collaborative Project Management

It’s funny how old habits die hard. Consider the following:

  • I can’t seem to wean some of my tech-savvy friends off email when they should just know better.
  • My dad still checks his stock quotes on television.
  • Many are using old versions of Microsoft Excel or Project to manage their enterprise-wide system deployments, upgrades, and other information management (IM) endeavors.

To be sure, each of these tools was powerful “back in the day” and, truth be told, they still can get the job done. Sort of. With regard to MS Project and Excel, even “older” versions contain essential functionality when it comes to tracking resources, producing reports, etc.

Old School Tools

But there’s always been something that’s frustrated me about these applications. (No, not that Microsoft makes them. I’m a big MS guy. We can discuss the reasons over beers sometime.) Rather, these tools just didn’t allow for easy collaboration, something part and parcel of the MIKE2.0 framework. Typically, one person held the “master” file (.XLS, MPP) and either kept it close to his/her vest or sent it around to team members for updates.

The following process wasn’t terribly uncommon:

  • Team member sits down and manually update tasks on massive project plans
  • Team member sends said updates to some type of PM or administrator
  • Invariably, t eam member needs to explains that updates are not in sync anymore
  • Repeat above process every week or so

It just seems so 1990s…

Disclaimers

Now, Office 2010 with its web-based front end may address the linear nature of updates to each tool. To be honest, however, I’m too lazy to look it up right now–and Project isn’t part of the main Office suite. There’s no way that I’m going to be an early adopter for the 2010 version. I’m still shell-shocked over the drastic GUI change from Office 2003 to 2007.

Also, note that this post only uses a particular product (Comapping) as an example of new PM tools and a new mindset. I could just have easily picked another tool.

Project Management 2.0

There are many new web-based apps out there to manage large projects. From what I can tell, they do a much better job than the relics of years’ past. I’ve kicked the tires on a few and been fairly impressed. I recently spoke with John Kyle at APE Software and he mentioned that his organization uses Comapping. I started playing around with it and created this completely incomplete “plan.”

The visual and collaborative nature of the tool just blew me away. Yes, you can share your screen with others and “co-create” a plan or make changes in real time. There are other really neat features that, from my perspective, would facilitate collaboration, communication, and effective project management. These are all admirable goals.

Simon Says

Tools alone don’t ensure that a project will come in under budget and at or ahead of schedule. Many things can still derail projects of all sizes, scopes, and sorts. No one’s disputing that. But doesn’t it stand to reason that a better PM tool (whichever you choose) will allow for collaboration? To me, Agile projects just don’t fit neatly into the Gantt Chart type of mentality.

Think of this in terms of a golf analogy. You give me the world’s best clubs and I’m not breaking 80. I’m just not that good. However, let’s say that:

  • You show me how to swing properly
  • I practice
  • and I have a great set of clubs

Isn’t success more likely?

Feedback

What do you think?

Tags:
Category: Information Development
1 Comment »

by: Mkbergman
19  Jul  2010

‘Pay as You Benefit’

A Natural Synergy Between MIKE2.0 and the Semantic Enterprise

A recent post, “Pay as You Benefit‘: A New Enterprise IT Strategy,” describes an incremental approach to new information development activities premised on low-risk, affordable deployment chunks. The strategy is based on MIKE2.0′s Semantic Enterprise composite solution offering, and is a natural expression of MIKE2.0′s incremental deployment methodology. The strategy is especially well suited to the areas of information and knowledge management and information integration.

The pivotal difference in the ‘Pay as You Benefit‘ strategy is a shift from a closed world to an open world approach. Not only does this shift negate past IT hurdles of completeness and comprehensiveness — which have raised the stakes for IT initiatives for decades and are arguably a root cause of many failed projects — but it also is more suitable for enterprises needing to integrate outside information. Open world approaches can also comfortably embrace closed world ones, while the inverse is not true.

See further the full posting on the AI3:::Adaptive Information blog, a new addition to this site’s blogroll.

Tags: ,
Category: Information Strategy, MIKE2.0
1 Comment »

by: Bsomich
17  Jul  2010

Weekly IM Update.

 
 
 Untitled-1.jpg

MIKE2.0 Business Solutions 

MIKE2.0 Business Solutions provide recommendations for solving a number of business problems for which information management is critical to success.

Business Solutions help users by proving an introduction to the business problem, the industries it impacts and why the MIKE2.0 approach is beneficial to solving the problem. They also provide a set of high-level business requirements, required aspects of the SAFE Architecture and applicable activities from the Overall Implementation Guide. It also lists some recommended best practices for implementation, typical areas of complexity and applicable vendor technology solutions to solve the business problem.

Proposed initial MIKE2.0 Business Solutions include:

Business Solution Offerings relate to the Business Model View of the architecture and are complemented by Core Solution Offerings. To solve any complex business problem Application Development, Infrastructure Development and Information Development activities are needed.

Feel free to check them out when you have a moment.  Contributions are always welcome.

Sincerely,

MIKE2.0 Community  

 
Contribute to MIKE:

Start a new article, help with articles under construction or look for other ways to contribute.

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42.gif

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43 copy.jpg

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All content on MIKE2.0 and any contributions you make are published under the Creative Commons license. This allows you free re-use of our content as long as you add a brief reference back to us.

This Week’s Food for Thought:

The Case Against Collaboration: Part 3

In my last two posts, I described some of the reasons that all projects and endeavors do not lend themselves to effective collaboration. Whether they deal with people or with innovation, some projects or products are best conducted with the fewest number of people possible–at least initially. In this post, I’ll discuss some of the cultural and geographic challenges associated with collaboration on IT projects.

Read the complete post.

Why Add More Features?  Because We Can or Because We Should?  

I just read a great post by Daniel Mathai of Infosys, Why Social CRM Can Wait.  He brings an interesting perspective into the decision to add social features to your CRM, which I think is valid for many other business intelligence projects as well.

Why are we adding more features to our applications?  Because the capability is there, or because we need it?

It is easy to make a decision to pursue additional intelligence based on the fact that it will give you a competitive advantage or the ability to learn more about your customer and prospect base.   However, more often than not, managers are quick to jump into the latest functionality without thinking of how it will impact the system as a whole. 

Read complete post.  

Enterprise 2.0 Needs to Do Better  

Enterprise 2.0 should be more integrated with business processes, so said several blogs summing up after the recent conference in Boston. How is it possible not to think about Enterprise 2.0 and business processes in the same breath? I said as much in a comment on Andrew McAfee’s blog. Business process = interactions among people. Business process innovation is about doing better or doing differently. 

Read complete post.

 
 

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Category: Information Development
No Comments »

by: Bsomich
15  Jul  2010

Why Add More Features? Because We Can or Because We Should?

I just read a great post by Daniel Mathai of Infosys, Why Social CRM Can Wait.  He brings an interesting perspective into the decision to add social features to your CRM, which I think is valid for many other business intelligence projects as well.

Why are we adding more features to our applications?  Because the capability is there, or because we need it?

It is easy to make a decision to pursue additional intelligence based on the fact that it will give you a competitive advantage or the ability to learn more about your customer and prospect base.   However, more often than not, managers are quick to jump into the latest functionality without thinking of how it will impact the system as a whole.  From my experience, the system (whether it be CRM or ERP, custom built or software) needs to be audited properly to ensure that it is well managed and integrated before embarking on the latest functionality to enhance it.

It sounds simple: Make sure you can fit the new car in the garage before you bring it home.  But it happens, time and time again.  In your opinion, what are some of the reasons why companies fail to audit and prep their information systems before adding functionality that will significantly alter it?

Category: Business Intelligence, Information Development
1 Comment »

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