Reltio master data management architecture rides graph analytics wave

An onslaught of unstructured data, social and otherwise may change the nature of master data management platforms. Reltio Cloud may stand as an indicator.

Each quarter, the editors at SearchDataManagement recognize a data management technology for innovation and market impact. The product selected this quarter is Reltio Cloud 2016.2 by Reltio Inc.

Product: Reltio Cloud 2016.2

Release Date: July 17, 2016

What it does

Reltio Cloud presents a master data management architecture that combines aspects of master data management (MDM) systems with analytics, machine learning and other capabilities. The software is hosted on the Amazon Web Services cloud and includes the Reltio Commercial Graph, which applies graph database technology to uncover important relationships between data elements and runs together with a Cassandra NoSQL database to speed operations. An available Apache Spark data processing engine is also used to provide analytics capabilities.

Why it matters

Today, a near-surfeit of unstructured data is challenging traditional approaches to master data management. Many examples among present master data management architecture are underpinned by some type of relational database that uses relational data models that, in turn, can require considerable time to update. As well, relational systems are not immediately amenable to dealing with unstructured data. Moreover, such systems are not necessarily adept at representing the kinds of complex relationships that may exist when social media is mixed with more traditional data types already hosted within an organization.

Reltio's graph database provides a nonrelational underpinning for master data management, while a Spark engine supports advanced analytics to garner a better view into data trends. Also, because the system is cloud-based, it is in a good position to support new applications in which data from the cloud provides the center of gravity. Meanwhile, Reltio principals come to their use of the new technologies with considerable experience in data management; having serving stints with such data management pioneers Siperian and Informatica.

What users say

Michael Allelunas said Reltio's underlying graph technology represents "a cornerstone" that allows users to work more effectively with unstructured data. Allelunas, general manager of information management at IMS Health, said he and his team had been working closely with Reltio software for about two years. IMS Health offers customer relationship management, campaign marketing management, KPI and other applications for the life sciences industry.

Allelunas said the life sciences and health industries are dealing with a ''data explosion'' of the unstructured kind. Reltio software, he said, allows his customers to bring in a wide variety of data assets without reformatting. He contrasted Reltio's flexibility with other master data management systems' rigidity.

"We have to deal with social data, patient data and more. It is difficult to both be nimble and to marry all these kinds of data to on-premises master data management solutions, because such systems take a lot of cost and effort to update," he said. The system offers flexibility for analytics and reporting, that helps ensure requests for reports can be produced more readily, he added.

Drill down

  • A separately licensed module known as Reltio Insights connects Reltio Cloud managed data with an Apache Spark-based analytical engine.
  • The system, tapping into the Reltio Commercial Graph, can point users to likely relationships that exist between customers and other entities.
  • A suggest mode can trigger a workflow to review and approve data change requests.
  • Bulk edit and custom actions allow any type of action to be applied to a filtered list of records or values.


The company does not disclose pricing but states that pricing is "based on the number of unique consolidated profiles being managed, and the number of users accessing the platform."

Next Steps

Discover five steps to implementing an MDM program

Find out how to get started with master data management

Ask the Expert: How to combine master data management and BI projects

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