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Mike Ferguson

Welcome to my blog on the UK Business Intelligence Network. I hope to help you stay in touch with hot topics and reality on the ground in the UK and European business intelligence markets and to provide content, opinion and expertise on business intelligence (BI) and its related technologies. I also would relish it if you too can share your own valuable experiences. Let's hear what's going on in BI in the UK.

About the author >

Mike Ferguson is Managing Director of Intelligent Business Strategies Limited, a leading information technology analyst and consulting company. As lead analyst and consultant, he specializes in enterprise business intelligence, enterprise business integration, and enterprise portals. He can be contacted at +44 1625 520700 or via e-mail at

Following on from my last blog on data federation, the next data federation pattern I would like to discuss is a Master Data Virtual MDM pattern. This is as follows:


Pattern Description

This pattern uses data virtualization to provide one or more on-demand integrated views of master data entities such as customer, product, asset, employee etc. even though the master data is fractured across multiple underlying systems. Applications, processes, portals, reporting tools and data integration workflows needing master data can acquire it on-demand via a web service interface or via a query interface such as SQL.


Pattern Diagram


Pattern Example Use Case

A manufacturer needs to make sure that changes to its customer data are made available to its marketing, e-commerce, finance and distribution systems as well as its business intelligence systems to keep business operations, reporting and analysis running smoothly. A shipping group of companies needs to perform a routine maintenance upgrade on a particular type of asset. However, its assets are managed by different systems in multiple lines of business. In order to budget for this upgrade it needs to have a single view of assets to fully understand maintenance costs. 


Reasons For Using It

To obtain a single integrated views of master data for consistency across business operations quickly at a relatively low cost.

Posted December 11, 2009 9:24 AM
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