• Conrad Chuang

NetSpend/TSYS on supporting a high volume business with a multidomain/multi-context/ multi-style MDM

Updated: Jun 12, 2018

Last week (June 8, 2016) Dipen Shah, Director of Financial Systems, from NetSpend delivered an amazing case study on netSpend's multidomain program at the MDM & Data Governance Summit in San Francisco.

For those of you who don't know, NetSpend is one of the largest issuers of reloadable, prepaid debit cards in the US. If you have a Western Union, Paypal, or Intuit/Turbo Tax prepaid card, you have a NetSpend product. Currently owned by TSYS, one of the largest financial transaction processors in the US, NetSpend has over four million active accounts. Cards can be purchased from over seventy thousand retail locations or through over one hundred distributors. These cards can be reloaded at over one hundred and thirty thousand locations throughout the US. As an issuer NetSpend must process over nineteen billion dollars in transactions annually. That means NetSpend must settle (down to the penny) millions of dollars in transactions every single day.

Mr. Shah highlights NetSpends many methods of distribution

Given the context you'd think that the MDM team would be entirely focused on supporting the core business. Establishing an operational MDM to support clearing and settlement transaction processing with data on banks, counterparties, products and calendars. And you'd be right! That's precisely what Mr. Shah's team did. In fact standing up an Operational MDM for clearing and settlement was how NetSpend built their initial business case.

Starting with Operational MDM to support NetSpend's core business

But what's more interesting is what Mr. Shah's team did next.

They added an analytical MDM to support reporting and analysis (variation on the registry style of MDM).

... Adding Analytical MDM to Operational MDM

Then, the MDM team added a collaborative MDM to support their partner/distributor onboarding process (variation on the hybrid style of MDM).

… Adding Collaborative MDM to Analytical MDM and Operational MDM

After that (with the same MDM) NetSpend added a new multi-entity MDM, including domains such as product-terms, employees, financials, (multiple styles of MDM including transactional and centralization).

Adding multi-entity MDM to Collaborative MDM to Analytical MDM to Operational MDM

Also, to this multi-entity MDM, NetSpend's team extended their their employee master in a novel way, creating an on-line survey to facilitate employee 360 reviews in the MDM itself.

Extending MDM to non-MDM MDM-like use cases?

What's interesting about this case study is the ROI.

Typically when you hear an organization has implemented multiple styles of MDM and manages multiple domains of data and supports multiple use cases, the assumption is that the firm is using multiple software packages or an MDM suite. That is not the case here. NetSpend did not buy separate solutions or a "somewhat" integrated MDM suite. NetSpend implemented one, comprehensive MDM software: EBX.

But that's not all.

Instead of wrangling with multiple software packages or trying to figure out how the plug the different suite components together, the NetSpend team climbed the learning curve once. What this meant is that they had the time and energy to think about creative ways to apply EBX5. This is how they ended up extending the employee master to include an interactive, data driven app for capturing employee 360s.

In essence NetSpend scaled twice, once on the technology and once on their employee skills.

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