Blog / Three Easy Data Maintenance Tips
Keeping Data Clean Doesn’t Have To Be Hard
For the last couple of newsletters we’ve been taking a quasi-detailed look at good data hygiene practices. Now alas, here we are at the end. We started off with a brief overview of the value of good data hygiene and a discussion of the general meaning of some common terms, including data maintenance. Then we went over how to conduct regular data cleansing, an in-depth, infrequent but still regular (we recommend quarterly) practice of going through your data with a fine tooth comb and getting it into tip-top shape.
But data is dynamic and always shifting, and that unfortunately means it also starts degrading almost immediately. So to keep your data as useful as possible for as long as possible, it’s time to take a look at that second part of good data hygiene. Here are four data maintenance practices you can implement to keep your data clean between quarterly cleanings (and make those go as smoothly as possible as well).
- Upkeep processes
- Appropriate organization
- Training and education
First, it’s vital that you have informed and legally compliant data update processes. Although the particulars will differ from industry to industry (especially when health information is involved), virtually every organization is subject to some kind of commercial electronic communications regulations (Canada’s most prominent example being CASL). That means oftentimes it’s not just a good idea to be proactive about your upkeep but a straight up law.
So make sure you have good, standardized process for collecting, formatting, and perhaps most importantly, updating your data. Without formal (though hopefully straightforward) procedures not just for making sure you update data (particularly CEM consent) but also how to do so, you’re just asking for trouble further down line.
One of the easiest ways to ensure your data gets out of control is to not organize it efficiently. Without appropriate file management and organization, duplicate data and irrelevant entries are almost certain to explode throughout your system, resulting in not just a clogged, hard to use database. To be clear, we’re not necessarily advocating siloes or otherwise partitioning data in a way that can make it hard to access across your company, but without some kind of imposed organizational structure that is clear and well-communicated, your data maintenance efforts are doomed to fail.
Training and education
No amount of organization or codified processes are going to help if your personnel aren’t aware of them or how to execute them. Training in common data upkeep practices and regular reviews of procedures are essential to ensuring a consistent level of high-quality data are always available to your team, and that they know how and where to store it properly. Regular training and review also has the added benefit of helping keep your teams technology skills sharp.
These are just a few simple ways you can help ensure your data is always ready to be used by your team for analysis, quality control, sales and maintenance and so on. That’s about the newsletter space we have for this topic, but as always, if you’re interested in learning more about appropriate data hygiene and management, contact your TRINUS account manager and we’ll be happy to help you out.
The TRINUS Team