The Intelligent Data Management Blog

Visionary and Simple : Welcome to Semarchy !

The new Semarchy Website is now out, and it is time to start blogging, right?
But before we begin, let me introduce Semarchy.

In a nutshell, Semarchy Convergence for MDM is a Master Data Management Platform. If the Master Data term and the MDM acronym are all new (or sound like vaporware) to you, you should have a look at the videos on this first page and then on this second one. After watching these videos, you should be able to understand the value of MDM and read the rest of this post.

The question that you will ask is "What makes Semarchy so different, cool and visionary?". Well, this post should give an answer to that question.

While looking at the MDM products landscape over the years, we have seen several types of product emerge. The most common are:

  1. Vertical Solutions that cover one single type of master data. PIM (Product Information Management) manages products, CDM (Customer Data Management) manages customer, etc..
  2. Multi-Domain Solutions, mainly Hierarchy Management and Data Design/Entry Solutions (I know, it is a large name). These solutions cover any type of master data. Yet, they focus on (i) Designing the master data format, and (ii) handling its life cycle via processes.

We analyzed these solutions, tried them, and were not extremely happy, as we found several flaws/issues.

The solutions in the MDM product landscape have (among others) the following flaws:

  • Verticals cover all the aspects of the master data lifecycle, but do not cover all kind master data in a single platform. Therefore, they create new silos of (master) data. They do not do master data centralization, and cannot handle references between master data of different types. There are relations between Customer, products and sites that need to be handled as master data, and verticals cannot handles these relations.
  • Multi-Domain solutions focus on Data Model design (that is, physical table design), and do not remain at the logical/semantic level. So you end up doing too much technical thinking and coding.
  • Multi-Domain solutions miss the point of data integration, as they focus on (i) handling hierarchies and (ii) manual/process-based management of the master data. It looks very cool to have a business process manager to handle new customers, and to have the possibility to reorganize the cost center hierarchies using drag and drop. Yet, the fact is: you will have to integrate thousands/millions of products/customers from several systems to create master data, and this will not be manually. Multi-domain solution push this problem outside the MDM scope into the Data Integration or Data Quality backyard. Well, it is true that DI and DQ can handle that, with a large amount of development. With this approach, MDM becomes a pretty but empty shell.

We can go on for ages, but these points should give you the big picture.

After reviewing the various solutions in MDM and their flaws, we (Semarchy) came out with some points:

  • A Master Data Management Platform should allow designing a Semantically Complete Model for any functional domain. Everything (structure, processes, controls, etc) should be described in a logical (UML kind of) model, and this model should support anything: Customers, Parties, Products, Planets, you-name-it, etc.
  • A Master Data Management Platform should Generate and Deploy the MDM Hub (That is the technical bits and bytes) from the model, with no extra coding.
  • A Master Data Management Platform should support the whole Master Data Certification Process Automatically and Transparently. In this process, gigantic batches of data arrive from several systems and are cleansed, enriched, de-duplicated to automatically create and expose the Master Data. This whole process should be transparent to the user and handled by the platform.
  • A Master Data Management Platform should handle Versioning of the Master Data and Metadata, to manage smoothly and safely changes on the master data content and structure.
  • An MDM Platform should provide the Best Performances Possible, as Master Data (i) involves gigantic volumes of data, (ii) is critical and (iii) is consumed by various systems (including Operational ones). Besides, (iv) at Semarchy, we think that MDM adopters are fast thinkers who need fast tools.
  • Finally, An MDM Platform should be simple and cool, Web 2.0 and Cloud Ready !

So we spent a few month thinking and coding, and came up with the Semarchy Convergence for MDM product. Now, you have the story ! Take a look at the Architecture and Features of the Semarchy Convergence for MDM, and See it in Action!