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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Data Quality Management 101 - The Basics

What is Data Quality Management?
Data quality management is the process of tracking and analyzing the data in customer and business accounts, ensuring it's accurate and up-to-date. This includes periodic updates and cleaning, pruning data for old and outdated information, analyzing data fields, and ensuring all personnel have reliable data they can count on for lead management, integration, and much more. Data quality management typically follows the structure outlined below:

Planning a Successful Strategy
The primary step in implementing true quality data management is through implementing and planning a successful strategy for migrating and managing the data. This depends directly on the integrity of existing data and how it is consolidated and organized.

Unfortunately, many company's data systems are messy, with information and files spread across a number of different data field, often complete with duplicate or incomplete records. Thus a carefully planned, unifying data management strategy is a must; if your company is organized, all processes will run smoother and quicker.

Implementing Data Migration for CRM
Consolidating data into one source is one of the most important steps a company can take in managing the quality if the data that is fed into its system. Many companies struggle with multiple data sources, and this can waste valuable time and resources.

If an in-house sales team has different data than the team in the field, things can get sticky and spiral out of control. Thus, the correct CRM application can help a company migrate its data effectively, quickly, and efficiently, allowing for more success and a higher quality of data.

Cleansing and De-duplicating Data
Cleansed and de-duplicated data is data that has been purged of annoyances like duplicate records or content and user problems due to integrity issues. This aspect of a CRM strategy's quality data management is meant to guide a company through the process of cleaning data before or after it has migrated from one source to another. This results in a more efficient, less cluttered system that is optimal for users and ultimately increases productivity.

How does Data Quality Management affect CRM?
Data quality management is integral to the success of a strong CRM strategy because all the system's users, from the sales force personnel to the executives and marketing teams, have to access the same quality of data. A central source of qualified data ensures everyone is on the same page and knows what’s going on. This leads to a more effective sales team, better customer service, efficient lead management, and an overall more solid, targeted CRM program.

What happens if Data Quality Management isn't figured into your CRM strategy?
If data quality management isn't figured into your CRM strategy, it means that your company may be working with faulty, inaccurate information; this can lead to all sorts of unmitigated disasters, from cold, lost leads to unsatisfied customers and a confused sales force. Data quality management is essential to the way a company or organization does business; thus, a CRM strategy without data quality management is too weak to be truly effective.

Salesforce.com is the world's first on-demand application service and a giant in the field of CRM. With over 24,000 customers, over 500,000 subscribers, and a 97% customer satisfaction rate, Salesforce.com continues to lead their field. To find out more about them, please visit http://www.salesforce.com.