September 19, 2016

IDEA Tip of the Week: Review Critical Attributes

IDEA’s Classification and Marketing Descriptor Model (CMD, formerly known as the Electrical Attribute Schema) defines the attributes available for specific product categories. The latest version of the CMD – CMDv05.00 – includes new information that was not previously found in earlier versions: critical attributes.

Critical attributes are a minimum set of identified CMD standard category attributes (product characteristics) that must be populated for most product categories. The critical attributes ensure that manufactures are providing key pieces of information to distributors to help them make proper buying and selling decisions.


Where can I find the critical attributes?

Within the CMDv05.00, each critical attribute is identified in the column titled “Critical Attributes”.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Category attributes are NOT to be viewed/considered from a column perspective, i.e., a column is not dedicated to any one specific attribute, and the column position means nothing within the CMD document. For example, color may be the second attribute for one category, and the last attribute for another category.  

When loading attributes for a product within the Industry Data Warehouse (IDW), identify the category for your product, the appropriate attribute label, and your associated value/unit of measure (UOM). If an attribute is not applicable for your product, skip it, and only send the label/value that you do have. When mapping, map the attribute label to the attribute value, then the next attribute label/value combination that you do have.

When will the critical attributes go into effect?

The critical attributes are being published now to give you time to review before they go into effect early 2018, at which point, they will be required and must be populated for an item to achieve compliance within IDEA’s Data Certification Program. IDEA will announce the effective date once the review period closes.

What happens if I don’t populate the critical attributes for one of my items?

Once the critical attributes are in effect, the item will not be compliant.

How can submit feedback about critical attributes?

We encourage all manufacturers to review the critical attributes at this time and prepare for their implementation. If you have any questions or concerns about the assigned critical attributes, please contact your Data Management Specialist (DMS). If together, you determine that you would like changes made to the critical attributes, your DMS will work with you to complete a CMD Change Request form (available within the IDW).