OASIS Customer Information Quality TC

The original Call For Participation for this TC may be found at http://lists.oasis-open.org/archives/tc-announce/200010/msg00003.html

The charter for this TC was modified on 19 September 2004 as announced at http://lists.oasis-open.org/archives/ciq/200409/msg00012.html

The charter for this TC was modified on 2 October 2008 as balloted at http://www.oasis-open.org/committees/ballot.php?id=1547; this change was announced at http://lists.oasis-open.org/archives/tc-announce/200810/msg00010.html.

The charter for this TC is as follows.


OASIS Customer Information Quality TC

Statement of Purpose

The objective of this TC is to deliver a set of XML Specifications for defining and managing Party (a "customer" is a type of "Party") information/profile (including party relationships) that are truly open, vendor neutral, application independent, industry independent and importantly "Global".

The definition of "Global" here means that the CIQ family of specifications are designed to handle party data (e.g. name and address) of any country at an abstract (simple representation of data) or detailed (complex representation, i.e. breaking the data into atomic elements) level.

A party can be a person or an organisation. An organisation can be a private/public company, educational institute (e.g. school, college, university, etc.), association, club, not for profit, government, group, etc.

To achieve interoperability of party information within and across an organisation, the optimal approach is to use a "single base party information standard" throughout the organisation to define and represent party data that can support different application requirements (e.g. parsing, matching, validation/verification, customer views, CRM, postal services, profiling, billing, shipping, etc). By this approach, unique identification of a party is possible within an organisation. CIQ family of specifications have been designed and developed to achieve this.

The Problem

Research tells us that it is much more cost effective to retain and invest in our existing customer base than to build or buy market share. A party/customer lost through ineffective marketing or poor service means a massive expenditure on acquiring a new party/customer to make up the lost revenue. This is more apparent as we move into the e-business environment. The Internet has created the need to rethink the issue of party profile/information management for many, if not most, large organisations.

In the highly competitive world being driven by global e-business, organisations have to provide different parties (e.g. customers, vendors, partners, employees, and potential customers) with accurate, up-to-date on-line information in a consistent manner. Party data forms the foundation for all organisations dealing with parties to build effective party relationships. To be effective, party data must meet the highest possible standards of both quality and integrity.

For most of the organisations having multitude of database systems (e.g. billing, sales, marketing, etc) dealing with party data, it is a significant challenge to uniquely identify their party across the databases within their organisation and this problem is turning out to be the number one priority for these organisations.

Moreover, interoperability of party data across different systems in a consistent and standard manner within and outside organisational boundaries is also becoming significantly important particularly in this new millennium where global commerce is high in the agenda for any organisation.

The Solution

To meet the above needs, it is important to implement a common set of open industry standards for representing, exchanging and managing party information.

Many XML specifications for defining party data (includes name and address specifications) have been developed in industry. However, they have been developed as part of a specific application/industry domain (e.g. Postal delivery, purchasing, invoicing, shipment, tax, accounting, human resources, travel, health, etc.). But despite the realisation by organisations on the importance of party information management particularly, no XML specification that specifically concentrates on developing a party profile/information management standard that is independent of specific application and industry requirements and that could be used consistently in an environment to meet various party information requirements, has been developed.

This technical committee aims at addressing the above issues by developing a set of party information management specifications that enable interoperability of party information within and across organisational boundaries.

TC Goals

The goals of the OASIS CIQ TC specifications for party profile/information are:

  • To be application independent
  • To be platform independent
  • To be industry independent
  • To be vendor neutral
  • To be free of any royalties and IPRs
  • To be truly "global", including the capability of handling about 36+ party name formats and addresses of 241+ countries with about 130+ Address formats and represented in 5,000+ languages
  • Independent of language, culture, geographical boundaries, applications and data formats
  • To work closely with standard groups/consortiums and influence such groups to adopt CIQ specifications for representing party data as part of its overall specifications for specific applications rather than re-invent the wheel
  • To promote the importance and adoption of CIQ specifications


The CIQ Specifications V2.0 has been stable since July 2002. The work that will be conducted by the OASIS CIQ TC as defined in this charter is to simplify the current CIQ specifications to enable wider acceptance and adoption by industry.

The scope of the work of the OASIS CIQ TC for 2006-2010 is to continue the work of the TC that has been done to date. The TC will use the following work as the reference:

  • Extensible Name Language Specification V2.0
  • Extensible Address Language Specification V2.0
  • Extensible Name and Address Language Specification V2.0
  • Extensible Customer Information Language Specification V2.0, and
  • Extensible Customer Relationships Language Specification V1.1

The TC will concentrate on the delivering the following:

  • Deliver XML schemas (W3C schema)
  • Deliver XML schemas that can define/represent party information at an abstract level to a complex level. For example, abstract representation does not break customer data into atomic elements (eg. Address Line 1, Address Line 2, etc). Complex representation breaks customer data into atomic elements (Country, Administrative Area, Thoroughfare, Postcode, etc) information into atomic elements
  • Deliver examples with the XML schemas, including reuse of the CIQ components in other business domains
  • Deliver detailed documentation of the specifications

Out of Scope

Following are out of scope of the CIQ TC work:

  • Formatting data
  • Define specifications for security of party information data
  • Define specifications for transportation of party information data
  • Define specifications for messages associated with party information data
  • Define specifications for privacy and permission of party information data
  • Define code lists associated with party information data
  • Validate/verify the actual party information data
  • Develop DTDs for party information specifications

List of Deliverables

  • V3.0 draft versions of xNL and xAL specifications by June 2006 for review
  • Approved committee drafts of xNL and xAL specifications by November 2007
  • Approved committee specifications of xNL and xAL by September 2008
  • V3.0 draft version of xPIL by January 2008 (xCIL will be renamed as xPIL – extensible Party Information Language)
  • Approved committee draft of xPIL by June 2008
  • Approved committee specification of xPIL by September 2008
  • V3.0 draft version of xPRL by December 2008
  • Approved committee draft of xPRL by February 2009 (xCRL will be renamed as xPRL – extensible Party Relationships Language)
  • Approved committee specification of xPRL by August 2009
  • Submit the committee drafts for consideration as an OASIS Standard by February 2010
  • Look at the feasibility of representing xPRL using ontologies and build a draft model by December 2010

IPR Mode

Royalty-Free on Limited Terms


Following is a broad classification of anticipated users of the CIQ Specifications:

  • Any organisation (private/public) that needs to represent and exchange party data in a standard way independent of processes, technologies, and specific business areas
  • Any tools that process party data
  • Any solution providers that provide solutions around party data
  • Any standard group that needs to represent party data in a standard way as part of its overall standards work specific to industry domains
  • e-Government initiatives
  • Consortiums


The TC will conduct its business in English.