Defining ‘Quality’ for Material Master Data
With 2016 behind us and the festivities coming to an end, it is time to pick up where we left off in December. In the first part of this blog series, we talked about Material Master Data Quality and discussed what the first three terms in the phrase signified. Today we’ll be tackling the last, and the most critical term, quality.
Over the years, experts from various fields have defined the term ‘quality’ in different ways. Some of the most interesting and intriguing definitions include:
- “Quality is fitness for use.” – Joseph Juran
- “Good quality means a predictable degree of uniformity and dependability with a quality standard suited to the customer.” – Edwards Deming
- “Quality is conformance to requirements.” – Philip Crosby
Even though these definitions use different words and showcase the speaker’s own worldview, the one common thread is the acceptance that quality is relative. It does not exist in a vacuum and there is no such concept as ‘absolute quality’.
This is also true in the world of material master data. As we partner with the largest companies around the world seeking to improve the quality of their data, we have realized that the measure of quality changes depending upon the company, the industry, and even the geography. This is why a material master data quality tool has to be adaptable and smart enough to work under disparate conditions. One of the reasons our clients get into multi-year contracts with us is the power of Harmonize and Integrity to learn, adapt, and provide – as Crosby would say – ‘conformance to requirements’.
The series will conclude next week with examples of some of our customers and how they benefitted from a focus on material master data quality. As always, we’d love to hear your impressions and experiences. What has been your experience with ‘material master data quality’? Please share your thoughts and anecdotes in the comments section below.
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