SAP Brings Data Into Better Harmony

SAP's Master Data Management module for NetWeaver maintains master data across both systems and data sources.

SAP AG announced Tuesday a new module for its NetWeaver technology stack that promises to help companies harmonize data across applications and IT systems.

Announced at its SAP TechEd 03 Europe conference held this week in Basel, Switzerland, SAPs Master Data Management module looks to solve the problems created by similar but different customer, product or vendor information thats stored across a variety of systems, officials said.

MDM, first announced last year at SAPs Sapphire conference in Lisbon, extends and combines capabilities from NetWeaver—SAPs integration platform—into a single software package for maintaining master data across both systems and data sources. It is shipping this week.

MDM uses components from SAPs namesake Exchange Infrastructure, Business Intelligence, Knowledge Management and Enterprise Portal to essentially derive a common view of reference data—definitions of customers, suppliers, products and parts—and synchronizes that data.

MDM works by integrating both the data and the applications that support business processes. In the mix are analytical and search capabilities that enable users to identify identical or similar data objects across systems. At the same time, the software cleanses objects to keep the master data consistent.

MDM adapters receive data from third-party systems and unify that data into a common format.

For connectivity and communication with other systems, MDM acts as a hub of sorts. It logically groups related objects and distributes them concurrently into systems designated by the end user. An automated publish and subscribe feature pushes information to the correct destination.

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