Second generation customer data integration (CDI)-master data management (MDM) solutions range from middleware-centric, do-it-yourself frameworks to complex applications approximating the broad functionality of an enterprise customer relationship management (CRM) solution. Global 5000-size enterprises are confronted by complex IT landscapes that increasingly dictate a multihub scenario, e.g., supporting legacy customer information files (CIFs) along with systems of record in enterprise resource planning (ERP), CRM and other application packages as well as standalone MDM solutions. Such a multihub scenario mandates a service-oriented architecture (SOA) approach to CDI-MDM. By 2008, CDI-MDM requirements will drive vendors into fourth generation, full spectrum hubs (support for structured and unstructured information with extreme scalability). Fourth generation already? What happened to the third generation (3G)?

What are the vital signs of a 3G CDI-MDM solution? Type -A CDI-MDM project leaders within large-scale IT organizations offer five indicators:

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