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Strategic Role of Master Data in an Enterprise Service-oriented Architecture

Strategic Role of Master Data in an Enterprise Service-oriented Architecture


Well Managed Master Data is critical to the Service Oriented Architecture Strategies (SOA) such as Enterprise Service Oriented Architecture(enterprise SOA).

The underlying principle of enterprise SOA is the use of components. Business Processes are divided into services which can be reused (depending on the requirements). Services provide the technical basis for enterprise SOA. Typically in organizations Business Processes work across applications and share the same master Data as shown in the picture below.




** Business Process that span across different applications needs to reference the same master data as shown in the illustration above.

Enterprise Services are Web Services with an enterprise level business value. The following are the few examples for possible Enterprise Services for Sales Order Processing.

·         Read Sales Order

·         Create Sales Order

·         Change Order etc…


The following figures illustrate the difference between SOA and ESOA. In SOA , existing and new interfaces are mapped using a different type of technology called Web services.




For example, an ordering system may have an interface called Delete Order. However, deleting an order would have a lasting negative impact on the consistency of data. For example, a follow-on document has to be created based on the order to ensure the customer is charged a certain amount if the order is canceled after a certain date. At the same time, the order should not turn-up for production. Therefore, an option of deleting the purchase order should not actually be externally available, and a Cancel Order enterprise service should be used instead.




SAP Netweaver is the platform for developing /operating an enterprise SOA and master data plays an integral role in Business areas and processes. Highlights of the SAP’s MDM Solution are:

·         Ability to store master data in the form of a service

·         To make correct information available at all the times from a single validated master data container.

·         Central MDM that is based on services is relevant for all the applications in the landscape.

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