While I don’t have the latest market sizing figures in front of me (and I’m not sure how accurate they are anyway), I do believe that the Master Data Management market is growing fast.
But I don’t think that we’ve quite left the “early adopter” phase of the market yet. There’s still a big competitive advantage to be gained from a robust implementation of a well thought out MDM strategy. That right there tells me we’re not into the mainstream phase of the market yet.
And the vendors’ products, while maturing nicely, still have some distance to go in terms of features and interoperability with different middleware, business process automation, data quality and external content providers. All products support some of these capabilities, but no product supports all of the various permutations of capability and vendor.
The resource shortages we’re seeing in the marketplace are another indicator. If the market was mature, stable and mainstream, then there would be little or no resource shortages.
This is good news, though. When a technology starts to become a “cost of doing business” and become a commodity, when vendors’ products become so stable that better marketing becomes more important than making a better product, and when all of the human resources are fully trained up on the various products, the market reaches an equilibrium point, and things become less interesting.
That’s not to say that a mature, stable technology like ERP or e-commerce is no longer interesting, or doesn’t provide any advantage to companies implementing it, but I personally really enjoy this fast growth stage, as we move from the “early adopter” phase to the mainstream phase.
So we’re not seeing the beginning of the end, but we may be seeing the end of the beginning.
We expect to see the MDM hub platforms maturing further, with more consolidation among software vendors. There will be continued resource shortages, but we’ll see large and small firms continuing to re-tool their resources and re-brand their methodologies. And companies will continue to invest in the Single Source of Truth, and get corresponding increases in revenue, improved efficiencies and better compliance.
And MDM will continuing to be a very interesting space, for at least the next several years.