Your business data is the lifeblood of your organization. It runs automated workflows, giving customer service staff the whole story every time the phone rings and informing about decision making.
Even small businesses can benefit from the rise of big data by optimizing their organization’s data and creating processes to make it work. According to Experian, eight out of ten companies believe that data is one of their most valuable assets.
When your business data is reliable and accurate, it’s hassle-free. But when mistakes, duplicates and question marks appear … it’s not so pretty. When you can not trust your business data, problems quickly arise and multiply in all areas of your organization.
Companies lose as much as 20% of revenue due to poor data quality, Kissmetrics shares. Back in 2013, HBR also talked about the ripple effect of unreliable data as part of the “Data’s Credibility Problem”:
“When data is unreliable, managers quickly lose faith in it and fall back on their intuition to make decisions, manage their businesses and implement strategy. For example, they are much more likely to reject important, counter-intuitive implications that come from big data. analyzes. “
To get the best results as a data-driven organization, here are some of the best ways to strengthen the foundation and make your business data the most reliable it can be.
9 ways to repair unreliable data and increase accuracy
1. Improve your data foundations.
Data debt – the cost associated with poor management of data in a company – is a significant problem for many organizations, and 36% of companies say that data reading is crucial for the future-proofing of their organization, Experian shares.
Making your business data more reliable does not just happen by magic: it requires a strong framework, processes and a computer-savvy workplace. Make sure you have as early in your business trip as possible:
- A powerful CRM system for centralizing all contact data
- Processes for organizing and segmenting data
- Integrations between apps
- Formal data recovery courses in place to train your team
- A clear strategy for how you will use and maintain the data you collect
Remember the old saying: the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the second best time is now. The same goes for getting your data in order!
2. Look at where new data is coming from.
Like reliable data, cluttered and unreliable data does not happen by accident. There is always a source. To make your business data more reliable, follow the trail back to where the data is coming from.
How is data added to your CRM? Are there forms or manual imports that cause bad data to corrupt your database? Do different team members import conflicting data in different ways into multiple apps?
3. Optimize forms and data collection channels.
Once you have identified how new data is entering your apps, spend some time optimizing these data collection channels.
To collect valid and reliable data, make sure that these factors are true for each piece of data you collect:
- You actually need to collect the data
- You compile it in a consistent and standardized format between apps
- You have clear permission to collect it based on data protection rules
- It will be stored and organized in the right app for the right purpose
4. Divide data layer.
One recipe for unreliable data is to have data silos. A data silo is a collection of data that one department has access to but others do not have.
The negative effects of data silos are bad news for the performance and productivity of any organization: they include a lack of transparency, efficiency, collaboration and trust.
To remove data silos, use central CRM between departments, connect data between apps in your tech stack, and focus on building a culture of collaboration between departments.
5. Segment your data.
Good business data is organized, adds value to your business and is collected with the explicit permission of users. To make your data more organized, segmentation is your friend.
Segmentation can look like labels, tags, list memberships, groups, or other properties that tell you more about each contact and divide your database into clear categories of preferences, demographics, purchase history, and more.
When you integrate your data between apps using an iPaaS (Integration Platform as a Service), you can create syncs based on your segments and connect the right data in two ways between your apps.
6. Clean up your databases.
To make your business data more reliable, you need to clean up cluttered data as soon as possible. This means repairing or removing:
- Incorrect data
- Obsolete data
- Copy data
According to SiriusDecisions, it costs on average around $ 1 to prevent a duplicate, $ 10 to correct a duplicate and $ 100 to save a duplicate if not processed.
To prevent duplicates and other bad data, create enterprise-wide data entry and maintenance standards, then sync data from the most accurate source to your other apps and create an overall picture of your database. It is also valuable to set up and document processes to standardize and verify new data.
7. Connect your apps to integrate data.
The most effective data management strategies connect data between apps. This removes data silos, creates an integrated view of all your data and synchronizes updated data to the right places as soon as something changes.
The easiest way to achieve quality data integration is with a zero-code iPaaS solution that connects the dots between all your important business apps, from your CRM to your email marketing system and customer support software.
8. Create available reporting dashboards.
Instead of hiding your data insights on private dashboards, make them transparent to the right people on your team. For many KPIs, that means your whole team.
Organizations with the most efficient and reliable data typically select a limited number of effective KPIs and make these highly visible in the team.
This not only helps your team get invested in company, team and individual performance, but it also increases the chances of errors and inconsistencies in your data being recorded. * The most reliable data has its eyes on it. *
9. Schedule regular maintenance.
Maintaining data quality in your business is not a one-time job: it requires ongoing maintenance, cleanup and optimization. If your organization has a dedicated operations manager, part of their job role may be to monitor and optimize data quality. But in any case, it’s worthwhile to make data integrity and literacy part of your company’s DNA or part of every team member’s daily role.
This means creating the foundation for healthy data to flow into your organization and regular cleaning along with problem-solving and automation integration processes.
By optimizing data reliability, you can ensure that your business can receive the most accurate results and insights from your database both now and further down, as data integrity becomes increasingly important.
With automated two-way synchronization between apps, including your CRM and email marketing tool, you’re in the best position to manage your data holistically, perform regular health checks, and create an updated 360-degree view of your customer data.