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Master data, also called reference data, defines subjects such as products, customers, suppliers and brands. When effectively managed, it provides a consistent context against which business performance can be measured. Gartner describes master data in various master domains including:

  • Customer Information Management (CIM) or Customer Data Integration (CDI)
  • Finance Information Management (FIM)
  • Product Information Management (PIM)
  • Supplier Information Management (SIM)
  • On the market you will find generalist tools as well as tools that take a specialist approach for one of the sub-categories. The goal of master data management tools is to allow business to create 'one version of the truth' or a 'golden copy' of the data being managed. This reduces duplication and redundancy and can enable communication across disparate systems and across the enterprise.


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