The benefits of master data management in the life sciences industry cannot be understated; the enterprise-wide MDM approach allows for better communication across departments, ultimately leading to a reduction in overhead cost and significant improvements in overall business functioning. Unfortunately, in spite of the ample evidence suggesting that MDM is the way of the future in the world of life sciences, stakeholders may not be in favor of this approach. Convincing reluctant stakeholders is possible, but it requires thorough research and a compelling presentation littered with case studies and industry-wide analytics. The securing of an enterprise-wide buy-in may be a guaranteed challenge, but the following five best practices should make reluctant stakeholders more amenable to the idea of MDM.
1. Offer a Simplified Explanation of Master Data Management
Master data management may not be a familiar concept among stakeholders. Those unable to understand the basics of this approach are far less likely to approve of an enterprise-wide buy-in. Thus, a simplified explanation may be required before launching into case studies, industry surveys and the like. In addition to explaining the basic concept of master data management, be sure to address the difference between functional and enterprise solutions while highlighting the benefits of the latter option.
2. Address Concerns Related to Data Loss and Redundancy
After learning the basics surrounding enterprise-wide commercial data solutions, stakeholders may voice concerns related to everything from data security to duplicate information. These are all valid concerns and must be addressed candidly so as to appease stakeholders' fears. If a thorough, detailed plan for data security is presented, stakeholders will be far easier to convince of the approach's superior return on investment.
3. Provide Tangible Evidence of ROI for MDM
A general overview of the master data management concept may be necessary at the outset of the presentation, but eventually, shallow coverage of MDM attributes will fail to convince investors of the necessity of a buy-in. Instead, tangible evidence should be used to demonstrate MDM's significant return on investment. This is particularly true if the presentation includes an argument in favor of enterprise-wide master data management. Functional master data solutions tend to be less expensive in terms of front-end implementation; due to the higher expense of enterprise-wide commercial data systems, departments may require incredibly convincing arguments. Instead of rambling on about the benefits of an enterprise-wide approach, let the numbers speak for themselves.
Case studies typically prove most effective in the midst of MDM presentations, particularly if said case studies focus on similar life science organizations. Look for a case study that most closely mimics current objectives, and use it to demonstrate how enterprise-wide buy-in for MDM could deliver impressive results. Consider complementing any selected case study with industry-wide surveys or polls to demonstrate the overall efficacy of enterprise MDM.
4. Target ROI Arguments to Each Department
Although evidence of ROI is absolutely vital to enterprise-wide buy-in success, it is not prudent to replicate the same information for each department. The facts and figures that prove most compelling to one group of individuals may completely fail to capture the attention of other buy-in prospects. Instead, all business analytics should be examined carefully to determine whether they are actually capable of convincing specific departments of the viability of MDM. Although there may be some overlap for certain figures, it is more likely that the presentation will differ slightly for each targeted department. After all, each department is likely to have a different idea of what exactly constitutes an impressive return on investment.
5. Secure Investment From Senior Management
Though the cooperation of every department is necessary for the successful implementation of enterprise-wide master data management; if a particular department proves difficult to convince, it may be prudent to spend more time targeting senior management who could potentially override any objections from other departments. Likewise, all others could approve of a enterprise-wide master data management buy-in, but without the consent of senior management, the opportunity is lost.
Getting company-wide buy-in for your master data management strategy is imperative in order to streamline communicaiton and effectively make sense of patient data for commercial positioning. To learn more about how teams can better prepare to defend this need to internal stakeholders, join us at CBI's Commercial Data 2014 conference taking place November 6-7, 2014 in Philadelphia, PA.