Configuring Surrogate Keys

You can configure surrogate keys for source systems that do not provide keys for data entities.

Every unique crosswalk must have a unique key. When a source system provides a primary key with the entity in a record, the primary key must be used as the crosswalk key in Reltio platform. Sometimes a source system does not provide a key for some of its data. An example might be a file of customers and addresses where there is a unique ID offered for each customer but not independently for his address.

Example: 1500764, John Smith, 123 Main Street, Canton OH 87552

Example: 2786453, Jane Smith, 123 Main Street, Canton OH 87552

Since Reltio platform might use the Contact entity type for the customer and the Location entity type for the address, the crosswalks used in each will require its own key. In the example above, it's clear that 1500764 was intended to be the primary key of John Smith, whereas his address is merely additional information stored in the source record for John Smith. His wife, Jane has the same address info replicated in her source record.

Reltio provides the ability to have a unique key calculated for a crosswalk, when a source system does not provide one. In the case above, when John's record and Jane's record are posted to Reltio platform, John and Jane will each be assigned to separate contact entities each with their own crosswalk keys of 1500764 and 2786453 respectively. John's address will form a Location entity, linked to him, with containing a crosswalk with a surrogate key calculated from the components of 123 Main Street, Canton OH. Same thing will happen with Jane’s and her address. But since the Locations entities that were formed each contain identically calculated surrogate keys, the two location entities will automatically merge into a single Location entity. That entity will have two relationships:
  • One to John's contact entity
  • and one to Jane's contact entity.