Customizing and strengthening your matching algorithm

Master Data Management includes tools that enable you to tune and customize your matching alogrithm. By tuning your algorithm, you can control the way Master Data Management matches your data to create master data entities.

There are two key parts of configuring and tuning your algorithm:

  • Selecting your matching attributes. By choosing the data model attributes that are compared during the matching process, you can tell Master Data Management what data points are most important considerations for your algorithm. It’s important to choose attributes that are strong differentiators. Unique identifiers such as drivers license numbers are excellent matching attributes.
  • Choosing your autolink threshold. Each organization has different levels of risk tolerance for false matches. The autolink threshold enables you to define how sensitive your matching algorithm is, and how likely it is to combine records into entities.
    • If the threshold is low, you will have more overall matches, with likely more false positive matches.
    • If the threshold is high, you will have fewer overall matches and more singleton entities (made up of only a single member record), with likely more false negative non-matches.

Before you begin

If you have not yet run matching on your data, then you must select your matching attributes first before running matching. You can change your selections later if needed.

Conversely, you cannot choose your autolink threshold until after you have run matching at least once. This ensures that you’ll have some basis of comparison for changing your threshold from the default sensitivity. For example, if you notice too many false positive matches in your data, you can increase the threshold. If there are too many singleton records, you can decrease the threshold.


  1. On the data setup Overview screen, click the Overview page title and select Matching setup.
  2. Go to the Match settings tab to select the attributes to use in matching data. The first time you navigate to this tab, MDM will automatically generate some suggested attributes from your data model to use in matching.
  3. Review the list of matching attributes. These attributes will be used as the basis of comparison to match records and create master data entities. To add or remove attributes from the list, click Select attributes then select or deselect attributes as needed.
  4. Go to the Algorithm tuning tab to further customize your matching algorithm by defining the autolink threshold.
  5. Use the Autolink threshold slider to define your autolink threshold, then click Apply.
  6. When you are satisfied with your matching setup, click Run matching.

The matching process will take a while to complete. It will run in the background so that you can continue working. You’ll be notified when it’s complete.