Master Data can be referred to as a single source of truth or database, also known as a golden record, that contains the most up-to-date and accurate information for day-to-day operations. It supports transactional, non-transactional or analytical data and is usually shared across departments to help personnel conduct analytics and make decisions around services and other vital functions. Master data serves as the source of common data and often includes application-specific metadata and corporate dimensional data (that directly participates in transactions like a customer or citizen ID or department ID), although the data type can vary depending on the organization and its needs. Master data management (MDM) is a technology-enabled discipline which ensures the uniformity, accuracy, stewardship, semantic consistency and accountability of the official shared master data assets. It is the consistent and uniform set of identifiers and attributes that describes the core entities of the enterprise or government bodies used for their customers, prospects, citizens, suppliers, hierarchies or any other stakeholders.

Need for MDM

State and local governments across the world are evermore prompt and efficient in managing public data for better delivery of citizen services. They are under more pressure than ever to streamline citizen services and deliver better outcomes at a lower cost. For this, the government needs to manage data more efficiently and make the best use of it. The greatest of all challenges for any government is when there is the absence of centralized data and systems work in silos which don’t talk to each other. To perform better and increase productivity, breaking down silos is essential so that different departments and agencies can draw from the same information sources and develop a more holistic view of where improvements, savings and optimization can be done.

With thousands of transactions happening every day, acquisitions being made and customers or the public updating their information, the issue is multifold, leaving a large chunk of data out of sync which cannot be reliable as there is no way of determining which version is correct, incorrect or outdated. There are high chances of duplication and redundancy of data. Using this data for analysis can lead to flawed decision-making. And this is where master data management (MDM) steps in, creating a single source of truth as the base for reference.

Benefits of MDM

  • Improve data quality and accuracy for analytical and operational usage.
  • Eliminate data silos amongst disparate databases and systems.
  • Drives efficiency through a single platform of information, which in turn eliminates costly redundancies that rely upon multiple versions of data distributed across siloed systems
  • Simplifies the process and provides backup to recover their data in the unanticipated case of a disaster or loss of information
  • Link and centralize vital information.
  • Enhance data governance, stewardship, and security capabilities.
  • Get deep insights and speed up decision-making.
  • Reduce operational and system costs.
  • A well-executed MDM strategy ensures regulatory compliance

CSM’s Use Cases of Master Data Management

Social Registry:

Master data management has been successfully implemented in creating unified social registry of citizens for different nations for social protection schemes. It has enabled a single database to monitor & co-ordinate the ‘supply side’ of social protection programmes. It helps in the identification of ‘who receives what’, duplications & potential for synergies across programmes to consolidate vital information of different social protection programmes and their benefits. One such platform created for Gambia, an African nation, has shown the way on how social registry can be tapped to deliver benefits ‘real time’ to the poor. Also, the solution is integrated with Central Voter Registration System (CVRS) for dynamic inclusion.

CSM has developed two such robust social registry information system -golden database of citizens through MDM for Rajasthan and Odisha. Jan-Aadhaar social registry platform of Rajasthan unifies the entire service delivery ecosystem of the state with a single-card, single-number, single-identity philosophy by reducing multiple channels of government. Citizens could easily avail of various services like downloading Jan-Aadhaar eCard, the status of Jan-Aadhaar enrolment and card, the status of DBT services availed etc. The effectiveness of the social registry is well proven by its universal acceptance and usage with the enrollment of 19 million families and more than 73 million members and 1 billion transactions of amount more than 546 billion to date. Similarly, Odisha ‘s social protection delivery platform (SPDP) or social registry have enabled the government to monitor the well-being of beneficiaries of several state and central welfare schemes while weeding out ineligible claimants or ghost beneficiaries. A detailed SOP with a 3-tier verification has been created that would ensure the collection of farmers’ number, their gender, marital status, mobile number, residential address and bank account details for Aadhaar authentication, LGD mapping, bank account verification and Aadhaar lookup with national payment corporation of India. While creating the social registry the government is taking due care of data privacy, as well.

Unified Farmer Database:

Disparate databases have been a major impediment in data collation and authentication of a single source of truth, amplifying worries for the government authorities to identify genuine farmers. The federated farmers' database built by taking the publicly available data as existing in the Department of Agriculture and various data silos in government and linking them with the digitized land records can create a unified inclusive database of all types of farmers. Master Data Management has been the framework behind creating such a golden database of farmers for Odisha Government called ‘Krushak Odisha’. This is a 360-degree, immersive and unified database of farmers, enabling better planning, monitoring, policymaking, strategy formulation and smooth implementation of schemes for the farmers. This seamless data repository serves as the single version of truth for any information on the farmer’s demographics and his assets. What differentiates this solution from other farmer databases is that it aggregates info with the farmer as the premise and not his family.

The distinguishing feature of this database is that it is populated with details of all categories of farmers- cultivators & sharecroppers, landless labourers, livestock & fishery farmers and forestry farmers. This state-wide comprehensive farmer database contains the latest demographic, financial, land record, and asset-related information of all the state’s farmers. The digital solution can be easily integrated with existing external databases like Paddy Procurement Automation System (PPAS), Millet Procurement Automation System (MPAS), Aadhaar, Bhulekh (the state’s land records database), seed supply, fertilizer management, soil health card and Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY). The system has successfully integrated with 81 lakh- Unique Aadhaar Numbers, identifying 66 lakhs authentic farmers. The system has around 70 identified fields of the farmer (including demographics, occupation, crop, farming details etc.).

Process of MDM: 

The MDM services helped in building robust golden databases of citizens and farmers for different government plans and schemes. CSM’s expertise in the GovTech space, has enabled the government to manage every aspect of master record including hierarchy, structure, validations, versioning and enriching master data with attributes, descriptions, translations, documentation, and other related data.

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