Food producer uses data platform to spark organisational change

By Jeroen Grootnibbelink


Our customer, a large food production company, had been through a period of significant acquisitive growth. As a result, it had over 30 semi-autonomous food production facilities throughout multiple countries. This meant the organisation was de-centralised, operating multiple ERP (enterprise resource planning) and MES (manufacturing execution systems) and standardisation was extremely difficult.

This had significant implications for the company’s data strategy. There was no unified numbering system for the operational processes for domains, like product and location. This meant that a lot of manual re-work was needed, when the workload was shifted from one location to another. It also meant that reporting wasn’t standardised and employees were using lots of different front end visualisation tools.

As part of its OneCompany vision, our customer wanted to have a central ERP and MES, supported by a centralised data hub and clear and unified reporting managed through a data analytics competence centre (DACC). A choice was made to start on the data side, as an enabler for change and supportive to the ERP implementation.



Valcon was asked to conduct an MDM vision and roadmap study, in which the vision on master data management (MDM) from a people, process and technology perspective was developed, taking both the current and future state of the customer into account. Valcon was also asked to design the new DACC, including the KPI framework and the governance model.

Valcon conducted both assignments as separate projects, but the teams collaborated closely on results. Following the approval of the MDM vision and the DACC design, building a business case and selection of the software, both projects were implemented. This immediately reduced the number of frontend tools on the reporting side, leading to a reduction in cost.

The MDM implementation contained multiple domains based on product, location, vendor and customer. With the implementation, came changes in process, organisational responsibilities and governance. This was along with the introduction of new technology to support a centralised way of working, improve the data quality and ensure consistency in the data, both in old and new systems. This was particularly important for product data – from product requests, product creation and packaging, to customer specific information – which needed to be standardised to allow for interchangeability between production locations.

The DACC now provides a fully cloud based and unified KPI framework, a clear governance structure and instructions on what reporting is allowed at every level, while the underlying data set is centrally managed, so every report uses the same data set.

The DACC is now fully managed by a DevOps team, while the MDM support is transitioning into DevOps support, to ensure future requirements and changes can be incorporated into the new way of working.


  • Data efficiency boost: the MDM implementation ensured the company has a unified master data set over multiple domains, which guards data quality and consistency of the data, which enabled much more efficient and effective data, as it eliminated manual rework.
  • Accuracy: the MDM initiative prevented errors in operational processes and provided the basics for unified reporting which improved accuracy of operations and reporting across the organisation.
  • Management information: higher quality management information – due to better quality, standardised data – enabled the company to make informed strategic decisions based on one version of the truth. It enabled the business to compare results based on a standardised data set and for the first time, actually compare apples to apples.
  • One voice, one company: the MDM programme and a move to unified data, gave the company one voice, standardised working practices across the different locations and enabled them to act as one company.

If you would like to speak to someone at Valcon about how a Master Data Management approach could benefit you, please contact Jeroen Grootnibbelink at Valcon [email protected]

Case Studies