In Digital, data defines success. Data plays a very significant role in any business – it’s simply indispensable. Data comes in all shapes and sizes, and serves different purposes: product data, asset data, supplier data, employee data, reference data, location data, customer data and more. Yet, most organizations still overlook a crucial element to this process: Data Governance.

Data Governance is an integral part of any successfully implemented Master Data Management system, and it ensures the quality and security of data. Whether you are looking to normalize data or make sure it is available to the right business user, building robust workflow capabilities drives operational efficiency.


Data Governance in Master Data Management (MDM)

So what role does data governance play in a successful MDM system?

Maintaining a “Golden Record” 

MDM creates one single source of data, which could come from a person, business, unit or any participant that is accountable for the data in that MDM system. Data governance plays a major role here because it helps maintain that golden record of data and prevents data silos, enabling user access to indispensable data points to inform digital decision-making.

Data of data (Metadata)

In the new age of digital, product content is defined both by the product data and the media that surrounds it. MDM maintains master data as well as metadata for every entity. This, in turn, allows users to analyze and scrutinize the metadata with business logics around it, resulting in high data quality.

Referenced data

Reference data is one of the many types of master data, although not all referenced data can be considered master data, as teams may set up their own that differs from the organization’s. Referenced data is a constant that defines permissible values for data which maintains data standardization, validation and quality.


An important advantage to MDM comes in its ability to un-silo resources. In any organization or system, different entities are available to different people. Because of this, data governance helps secure master data and maintains who can own or access what.


When data governance is applied to all the MDM points above, an optimized data system is created which results in effective and efficient day-to-day operations.

Master Data Management in Digital Transformation

All in all, data governance is an integral part of Master Data Management success because it maintains high data quality and security, avoids operational errors around the data, and ensures day-to-day activities around the data are as efficient as possible.

Master Data Management, then, is a foundational requirement for Digital Transformation: by creating a single source of truth for data acquisition, mastering and analytics, businesses can begin to comprehend what their governance requirements are to ensure data accuracy, drive operational efficiency and develop efficient workflow processes for business units.