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Customer Master Data Management in the Cloud - Jewel Tan - ContactCenterWorld.com Blog

Customer Master Data Management in the Cloud

There’s nothing particularly exotic about cloud-based applications and the same is true of master data management solutions in the cloud.

The growth of cloud services, cloud data, and cloud usage continues unabated. We should expect, that as long as good internet connectivity infrastructure is available there will be a continued support for cloud based systems and in fact cloud based solution adoption should grow.


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More and more organizations are adopting cloud computing infrastructure to afford greater business agility and get access to the best available technology of the time. The adoption of cloud infrastructure like CRM in the cloud not only holds the promise of improved business efficiency but also the benefits of improved economic value and ROI.

In most cases, cloud solutions are well architected, unencumbered by legacy technology problems and present themselves as having a lower cost of ownership and wide accessibility to business stakeholders.

Businesses have been slow on the uptake of cloud-based MDM though with Gartner estimating that only 6% of all the companies that they talk to, have cloud-based MDM solutions in use.

Cloud-based Customer MDM presents itself in the shape of software as a service (SaaS).

This means that organizations do not have to incur the cost of the hardware and the software associated with it and have no application or hardware maintenance to pay.They pay one fee according to the size of the usage profile that they have, either in terms of records, users or both.

The organizational and financial cost of provisioning on-premise and captive hardware is sometimes prohibitive enough for organizations to effectively ditch capital expenditure on a system and instead invest capital budgets elsewhere in the business. They might instead choose a "pay as you g(r)o(w)" model which a SaaS application will support.

One of the reasons Gartner’s observation of 6% of adoption may be so low, could be tied to the fact that there is remains some anxiety around the security of cloud-based systems and a reluctance to store sensitive proprietary data outside the company’s firewall.

Platforms like the Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure and the Google Cloud Platform are deployed with the best resources available and a high degree of automation and monitoring.

Security is a top priority for these infrastructure providers in order to provide top tier companies and organizations across the globe, with the right level of secure and robust compute to meet their diverse needs.

Data hacking is regrettably a continuous threat but since the mid-2010’s on-premise system attacks due to inadequate software maintenance and control regimens have highly outnumbered the incidents of cloud attacks.

The cloud attacks themselves have had nothing to do with cloud security vulnerabilities, they have largely been as a result of poorly implemented data controls or internal bad players, so basically inside jobs.

Numerous customer relationship management (CRM), Enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer data platforms (CDP) and marketing automation (MA) solutions are cloud-based. Most notably Salesforce CRM and NetSuite ERP are exclusively available as cloud solutions.

Cloud based MDM (Master Data Management) solutions are also available and these include well known solutions from Informatica, IBM, Oracle and SAP as well as newcomers like Pretectum C-MDM for customer master data management.

Cloud-based SaaS applications like the Pretectum C-MDM deliver new functionality on an almost continuous basis and for major changes, you can decide when to upgrade and avail your business of new functionality.

Upgrades are seamless and generally invisible to clients until they are actually completed.

Legacy versions are typically only supported for a limited time after the general availability of new functionality and enhancements to reduce the costs of operations support.

Your organization should therefore be prepared to move with upgrades as they become available to ensure that you are making use of the newest version of your customer MDM. Updated technology or newer infrastructure is available for use via the cloud in a completely transparent way.

In considering a cloud provider, remember that not all cloud providers offer cloud hosting outside the US.

This is important when considering Customer MDM particularly in the context of Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Also, consider that US safe harbor agreements are problematic with the storage and transferral of EU citizen data outside Europe.

If you are using on premise systems that contain Personally Identifiable Information (PII) data then you may need to always store that data on-premise in the country of origin, this may represent an IT burden to your organization.

 

 

Publish Date: October 5, 2021 3:10 AM

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