success matching leads to accounts
source of truth for customer data
A new future in the cloud
Informatica’s switch from being an industry-leading on-premises software vendor to a provider of cloud-native technologies extends huge benefits to its customers: increased scale and flexibility, seamless updates, and heightened security. But the demand for SaaS technologies also brought innovative changes to the way that software and service providers operate.
When Informatica started its cloud transformation, the company quickly realized that this would affect customers, business strategy, customer services, sales, marketing, finance, IT operations and data management.
“Running a cloud company is wildly different than running a traditional B2B sales organization,” explains Informatica CIO, Graeme Thompson. “You need to understand how all of the pieces of your business work with each other and have the right platform in place to drive change across the board.”
The traditional sales cycle is very defined and linear, handing off between prospects and customers, among marketing, sales, and customer support. When operated under a cloud-based subscription service, the cycle is much more fluid. Informatica teams are in constant communication with both prospects and customers to introduce newly released features and offer additional services based on the customers’ evolving needs. For these teams to stay on the same page and provide customers with the best possible service, they need access to the same shared customer insights.
Informatica decided to completely rethink the workflows and solutions at the heart of its customer lifecycle to better match the new go-to-market strategy. And much like its customers, Informatica knew that the best way to support its business transformation is to move its data management capabilities to the cloud.
Informatica transformed its approach to master data management (MDM) with Informatica Intelligent Data Management Cloud (IDMC), Informatica’s cloud-native platform that provides all-in-one data management capabilities, including data integration, data quality, data catalog, data governance, and MDM. The Customer 360 SaaS application built on IDMC provides a definitive source of truth about customers from across sales, product, marketing, services, and finance applications and distributes trusted insights to teams across the company.
“It’s one thing to help our customers move their data management to the cloud, but it’s another to have gone through a comprehensive migration ourselves and understand all the opportunities and challenges they face along the way,” explains Thompson. “Having led by example with IDMC, we know what it takes to tackle data management issues for some of the world’s most common enterprise applications and how to come out successfully on the other side.”
Multidomain data management in a single cloud platform
Informatica invested in a modern cloud applications portfolio to manage its business operationally. It uses current cloud-based solutions from Adobe on the front end to Salesforce, Oracle ERP, and other modern solutions on the back end. IDMC combines all data management capabilities into a single cloud compared to prior approach that required separate installation and maintenance for services like integration, data quality, mastering, governance, and workflows.
The MDM capabilities in IDMC create trusted customer profiles by matching, merging, relating and preserving the lineage of records across these critical business applications.
“Bringing together data is just the first step, because all teams—sales, marketing, services, finance—have different ideas about what the data means and what they need from their data,” says Thompson. The finance and sales teams might define bookings differently, for example, depending on how they view gross bookings, adjustments, and the value of opportunities. “It sounds easy, but it can be really difficult to define what all teams want their data to look like. Understanding the business need is key to the transformation for every team.”
When creating a definitive source of truth about customers from data held across systems, data quality and data governance provide critical capabilities that strengthen an intelligent MDM solution. CLAIRE®, Informatica’s AI and machine learning technology, underpins many of the data features that accelerate and automate data management and governance when building a standard, 360-degree view of customers.
So, now, when sales reps create a new account in Salesforce, the CLAIRE engine automatically searches MDM and suggests existing names, emails, addresses, company data, or other information. This helps reduce the number of duplicate entries upfront and streamlines the customer data for onboarding and consistent communications. CLAIRE also powers contact identification, flagging entries that cannot be used for various reasons, such as people who have changed jobs or records with incomplete contact information.
This automation can have a big impact on the efficiency and effectiveness of sales teams. Having accurate account and contact information presented real-time not only improves the adoption of Salesforce, it allows teams to reach out to prospects quickly, considering aspects like parent company association, geographic location, etc. By avoiding manual and lengthy data cleansing processes, sales representatives can now confidently reach the right contact at the right account with the right offer.
“With the power of machine learning with CLAIRE, we can quickly connect new contacts with the right account and introduce them to the right sales rep,” explains Thompson. “We went from a 50% to 85% success rate on matching leads to accounts with MDM and CLAIRE. That means more effective use of our marketing spend and sales representatives time from the first interaction with a contact.”
Creating customer data that teams can trust
Using the MDM capabilities in IDMC, Informatica cleans and reconciles the more than eight primary data sources, including 150,000 Salesforce accounts and 50,000 Oracle accounts, to create its master list of 500,000 customer accounts. Informatica also consolidates 9 million individual contact records into a clean list of 3.7 million records. This clean list makes it easier to identify unique customers, report accurate numbers, and determine the best way to connect with individual contacts.
“All of the data created through opportunity management, lead management, and other go-to-market processes can be integrated into a single record of truth through MDM,” says Murali Pabbisetty, Sr. Director, BI Solutions Delivery at Informatica. “There are few applications in a business that are truly enterprise-wide, but our MDM solution on IDMC is one of them because it unearths critical pieces of insight that everyone needs.”
Some of those insights are delivered through self-service capabilities that are typically found within a customer data platform (CDP) such as adding context, improving analytics, and enabling segmentation and orchestration. By linking the reconciled master record with customer and contact interactions, marketing can reduce its reliance on IT and directly access a better overall picture of what customers are interested in. With this information, marketing can create more effective campaigns and lead nurture pipelines that can result in a growing number of satisfied customers and lower cost per lead.
An account intelligence dashboard makes customer information accessible to teams across Informatica, including marketing, customer success, and finance. Marketers gain a clearer view of what contacts at each company are doing on the website, allowing them to build more precise marketing segments and even automatically trigger campaigns based on behaviors.
“Having an accurate customer master is critical,” says Satish Mallavolu, Consultant, Enterprise Data and Analytics at Informatica. “When your core information is inaccurate, there’s no way to produce accurate downstream processes, whether we’re talking about sales or target calculations or territory planning. IDMC helped us increase accuracy higher than ever before by making it so simple to turn so many data sources into actionable insights.”
Keys to successful cloud data management
Migrating data management to a modern cloud environment can seem intimidating at first, but in Informatica’s experience, proper planning can help smooth the transition to the cloud.
IDMC demonstrates how working with an all-in-one data management platform can bring strong benefits and accelerate time to market. While companies may start with the need for data integration or MDM, capabilities such as application integration, data quality, and data governance are essential to getting the most from data.
Cloud-native, AI-powered Master Data Management