The role of a product data management consultant
Although data is a valuable asset, many companies do not treat it as such. Data often flows around the organisation in apparently random, incomplete, incorrect, outdated, or duplicated forms. A fast-moving business tends to have neither the time nor the capability to seriously address these issues. That is when a data management consultant can provide invaluable expertise in addressing the above problems plus the following common reasons for bad data management.
- Siloed business areas resulting in siloed practices like data hoarding
- Simple lack of knowledge – the business/technology interface is non-existent
- Data management processes which are unfit for purpose
- Outdated legacy practices in data architecture and storage
- Lack of a governance framework for consistent data management
What is a Product Data Management Consultancy?
If you want a future-proof data management structure aligned with your strategic and operational aims, the answer is ‘yes’. Even if you are confident that your data management is fit for purpose, you may still be using manual processing or constantly tracking down misplaced data or using several versions of the same data set. These practices consume time and money, have an impact on data quality and divert key people from more important tasks. Data management consultancy services equip you with the wherewithal to address data problems, adopt efficiency measures and learn how to enhance the performance of your data management in pursuit of your business aims.
Do I need a Data Management Consultant?
A product data management consultancy refers to a specialized service provided by experts who offer guidance and support in managing product data effectively. These consultants have extensive knowledge and experience in implementing and optimizing product data management systems and processes, helping companies streamline their product information and improve overall data integrity. By working closely with businesses, a product data management consultancy helps organizations establish best practices, select appropriate software tools, and develop strategies for organizing and maintaining accurate product data.
Businesses that invest in product data management consultancy services can benefit in various ways. Firstly, these consultants help improve data accuracy, helping companies avoid costly errors caused by inaccurate or inconsistent product information. Additionally, they assist in optimizing product data workflows, enabling businesses to reduce time spent on manual data entry tasks and streamline their product management processes. Ultimately, by partnering with a product data management consultancy, organizations can enhance customer satisfaction, increase operational efficiency, and gain a competitive edge in the market.
Download our Benefits of a PIM consultant guide
Is it worth getting a Data Management consultant?
In the case of data management consulting, you need the blend of experience and expertise which enables a good consultant to act as:
- A liaison officer
- A discoverer – dealing with pain points requires diagnosis
- An information gatherer, disseminator, clarifier, and checker
- A conduit for enterprise-wide collaboration
- A synthesiser of disparate information sources
- The conductor of the stakeholder ‘orchestra’, all playing from the same music sheet
When it comes to PIM consulting services, a consultant establishes oversight by discovering what makes the business tick. Where product data is concerned, that means assessing and addressing the following data- (and business-) critical areas.
- Data governance framework
- Data architecture
- Data storage and warehousing
- Master Data and Metadata Management (MDM)
- Data quality control
- Data integration and definition
- Data transformation (standardisation, enrichment, and formatting)
These fields all involve highly specialised knowledge, encompassing administration, research, documentation, optimisation, and maintenance. Don’t depend on the shortcut of asking your IT department to ‘go it alone’ and take responsibility for all the above areas – that’s like asking one mechanic to dismantle, customise and rebuild a car in a day. Moreover, it runs the risk of perpetuating the common problem of siloed information. You need the surety of data management consulting services to meld business solutions with technological capability.
Digitisation projects often involve a transformative change in the business. As with any major project, they require:
- A clear business case
- A detailed, documented, and measurable vision of the desired end state
- Visible, credible, and committed support from C-suite-level leadership
- Detailed planning and preparation
- Universal buy-in from stakeholders, from end users to budget holders
As an independent and objective expert with no departmental axe to grind, the data management consultant is perfectly positioned to make sure all the above factors create an improved outcome for the entire company not only in terms of data management, but on its bottom line.
What does a management consultant actually do?
Clearly, a single data management consultant doesn’t have the range of expertise required to carry out a major project. Moreover, companies come in all sizes and situations. They have varying levels of digital maturity and require the input and support of some, or all of the consultant profiles below.
Additionally, bear in mind that you may be dealing with product bundles or composites, relationships among different products and an enormous number of product attributes.
What Questions Should I Ask a Data Management Consultant?
Added value for your business
- Which of our business areas can be improved through better data management?
- What key business metrics will measure your consultant’s added value to the project?
- What’s the required scope of the project?
- What access do you need to personnel? Who is involved to ensure we gain maximum value from your interventions?
- How closely do you work with application and system owners who will be accountable for data discovery, proces
The solution vendor partner
Does the vendor:
- have the requisite experience and resources across the technology stack?
- have a significant body of experience in our industry or business function?
- have a clear project strategy for knowledge transfer to stakeholders and users?
- provide training, workshops, and other learning engagement?
- address integration among the core business systems (CRM, ERP, FP&A, etc.) we currently use?
SWD Data Management Consulting Services
At Start with Data, we have a team of expert and highly experienced Data management consultants in several sectors and specialities. The value of their consulting prowess is proven through hundreds of client engagements.
Our services ensure that only the relevant data management consultants are engaged alongside your chosen vendor at every stage of our delivery model:
- Discovery, planning and strategising
- Designing, building, implementing, and optimising
- Support, maintenance, and education
Throughout, we place a premium on stakeholder engagement because it is people who drive organisations. For our data management consultants, people skills count, to help gain an understanding of where the organisation is aiming for, how it operates and what makes its people tick.
We offer support and guidance on strategy, current & future state assessment, data quality assessment, UX & taxonomy Audits, PIM Platform Selection (Business Case Development, gathering requirements, carrying out research, shortlisting vendors, and presenting vendor recommendation). Get in touch to find out more