Role of MDM and Data Governance in SOA

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As SOA (service oriented architecture) initiatives gain popularity, let’s look at how MDM (master data management) and data governance can dovetail with a SOA strategy.

SOA, although technically a type of IT architecture, is more of an integrated approach to building high-level services that are inherently reusable and scalable across various applications. High-level services are not consumed as end-point services themselves, but operate more at the business process level.

While composing the entity framework for a service-oriented architecture, a Data Governance Council should be an integral part of the SOA team. The role of the Data Governance Council is two-fold:

  1. Provide a comprehensive data map (authoritative sources, data flows and underlying data policies) to the SOA architects, and
  2. To plan and implement “Master Data Services” as part of the services available for consumption to applications within the scope of SOA.  An example would be “Create Customer”, where sources, lookups, standards, business validations and enrichments are all built-in, and are available for applications across the enterprise to consume in a robust, auditable fashion.

So what does this do for an MDM initiative?

It provides a powerful platform to integrate the current business processes and to improve levels of data quality, to provide accurate, current and complete data within and outside the IT applications.

It also provides a central platform and process for various domains of master data (suppliers, items, etc) as they come aboard the MDM bandwagon.

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