Knowing the profile of customers has always been a competitive edge, even in past times. However, the dynamism of the modern market demands much more than that old custom of being personally greeted by the owner of the company at the door of the establishment.
In times of major mergers and acquisitions, organizations are faced today with dozens of islands of information that contain data for business strategy, often scattered and disconnected in transactional systems from many different flavors.
It would be virtually impossible to qualify the business data in order to make them useful, if information technology was not also on the rise sharply. Fortunately, technologies such as Data Centers, Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence are already mature, with over 30 years of existence, but still have gaps in functionality with respect to one of the most strategic goals: Know your customer.
In fact, the park now has a computer alphabet soup that usually causes much confusion among users or managers. Terms such as BI, DW and CRM are more popular, but initiatives such as MDM, IDC or PIM are still virtually an enigma to some.
Of all these acronyms, which in our view is most useful to study at the moment is just the IDC – Customer Data Integration – which can be understood simply, as a set of technologies applied to a single goal: to better recognize your client at the corporate level.
To explain clearly the meaning of IDC, we must first know the term Master Data. Master data is the key information about entities that are critical to your business. Databases containing customer information are the classic example. For large utilities the problem may not be as related to customers, but with difficulty in managing extensive lists of products for strategic or compliance objectives. In short, it’s technology to manage critical data and sensitive to each company at the corporate level.
We can define IDC Conceptually as technological infrastructure that aims at the integration, harmonization and management of master data. For management means from the application of business rules validation, enrichment and unification of corporate data to the management and strategic use of quality indicators of such information. Thus providing a rich source of master data due criticism, unified, and treated to meet the business processes. The exposure of this information typically involves the ability of the platform of choice in engaging these resources data buses and corporate services via SOA.
It is, therefore, a comprehensive set of computing resources combined to meet the common goal. There are hardware and software experts who are involved with integration capabilities and quality of data to create an identity resolution engine, and especially the involvement of people and processes to define the requirements of treatment can be determined as a corporate coverage.
Good joint depends, of course, experienced companies in projects with complex data so that the internalization of practice does not become another complication to the already troubled daily life of IT professionals of companies. The fact is that the abbreviation IDC, which is in focus at the moment, the world of business intelligence and its driving force could well be associated with that old practice which reads: Know your customer.
Aligned with other initiatives – some already well known as CRM, ERP – and some not so popular as the PIM (Product Information Management), the IDC technology is able to strengthen support for the complex process of decision making with respect to actions directly aimed at people who interact with the organization, be they customers or employees or related entities such as providers, for example.
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