Metadata management software is a type of data management software that stores, tracks, organizes, and makes accessible the metadata or information about business data and its attributes. Companies treat data as assets and resources that should be managed and maximized to be beneficial. In their day-to-day operations, companies generate, capture, and process significant amounts of data. Metadata management software provides users the tools to discover, register, describe, and locate data assets and sources through a clear and consistent metadata.
For data to be useful, it should be trustworthy. Metadata is like a pointer to data. By managing metadata, one group of users can be confident that their interpretation of a particular set of data is consistent with the interpretation of other groups of users. For example, when a marketing team gives a report about company revenue, the sales team can easily find, understand, and reconcile that revenue data for their own activities.
Metadata management software enables users to identify associations and relationships between data entries. It features a metadata catalog service that can help resolve ambiguities. Users can make advanced searches and queries based on attributes to discover similar terms, duplicate entries, and other inconsistencies. For instance, one team might be entering data for “client” and another team for “customer” when both are thinking of the same data. A metadata management software allows users a single system to discover and understand the usage and intent of a particular data entry.
Metadata management software is often used in conjunction with other data governance systems such as data catalog, master data management, and data quality software. Metadata management software provides several benefits, including:
- Consistency, clarity, and increased quality of data
- Automated discovery and registration of data assets
- Control and security over registered assets
- Lower costs of data ownership
- Reduced legal and compliance risk
- Integration with other business tools
- Improved business intelligence
Metadata management capabilities can also be found in business intelligence and analytics software. Some of the top vendors offering metadata management software are:
- Microsoft Azure
- IBM Watson
- SAP BusinessObjects