And when departments are clamouring for numbers despite the inaccuracies, it leads to a ripple effect of poor decisions based on those errors. But just how much is it really costing us? And what can we do to stop poor data hygiene before it spreads? Let’s take a closer look:
A Company Problem – Not Just an IT Problem
And that’s not even factoring in the cost beyond customer data. A few inaccuracies in customer names or details is one thing. But oftentimes, depending on the company culture in relation to data upkeep, it can affect other areas of business as well – productivity, security and making cost effective decisions.
In short, this is not a problem we can continue to throw money at and hope it goes away or works itself out.
What Exactly Is “Data Quality”?
Before you begin to get a handle on the data itself, it’s important to understand what “it” is. According to another Gartner study, data quality is examined by several different points, including:
That’s a lot of information to try and clean up “by hand”.
What a Difference Clean Data Can Make!
Of course, cost savings are one thing, but oftentimes management (and other executives) don’t just want savings – they want to see a direct correlation in terms of revenue as well. The real question is, how much can clean data make for us? Here’s a hypothetical (albeit very realistic) example from the same Ringlead chart:
And in addition to revenues and savings, the benefits of clean data go much farther. With greater data reliability comes greater credibility and a stronger decision-making foundation backed by data. Reports become more accurate. Customers respond to more accurate personalization. All departments enjoy greater productivity and efficiency. It’s a cycle of wins.
So as you can see, a few inaccurate records or non-standardised entries don’t seem like a big problem, but as your business scales, more and more information becomes fragmented and fraught with issues. Costs escalate. Efficiency plummets. But by the same token, by spending a little now, you reap far greater benefits over time. And any campaign started or improved based on solid, reliable information is one you can look to time and time again for greater insights and metrics that count.