As a leader, you may be hearing a lot of speakers at conferences and articles on business websites discussing the importance of addressing your data’s quality. Even after hearing and reading the many benefits of having a high level of data quality, you may still find yourself thinking, “But really, how can poor data really hurt my organization?” Aside from learning the 1-10-100 rule of data quality, we highly recommend taking a little time to think about how having poor quality data can wreak havoc on your enterprise.
Bad data usually results in an inability to spot opportunities and to take advantage of insights that can increase profitability and reduce costs. For example, being able to spot that Widget A sells best during the summer months can help help you predict your required production of said widget, eliminating a lack or product supply, which would lead times and lower sales. The ability to spot sales trends, manufacturing tendencies, and opportunities to up-sell becomes increasingly difficult if your business’s data is dated, invalid, incomplete, or just plain inaccurate.
How can you run a data-driven organization if you and your leadership team doesn’t trust your data? The answer is simple; you can’t. According to the 2016 Global CEO Outlook report, 84% of CEOs worry about just how trustworthy the data they base their business-critical decisions on really is. Delayed decisions due to data quality related hesitations are routine issues at companies that don’t have clean, actionable, and trustworthy data. Without being able to demonstrate business realities in clear numbers, moving new initiatives forward, or sunsetting failed initiatives, can be an extended, inaccurate process.
Loss of Consumer Trust
The ability to define what good data means to your unique organization is critical to your success. The stakes exist in more than just your your accounting department’s spreadsheet; more importantly, they exist in the minds and perceptions of your clients. Imagine you’re non-profit sending out donation solicitations via direct mail. What if your mailing lists are structured incorrectly and no one recognizes the issue, resulting in a mail piece addressed to one recipient, but the letter making the donation ask is addressed to the the person next on the list? How can your donors trust you with their donations if you’re unable to execute a direct mail campaign? This loss in consumer trust should be a real concern for organizations in the modern age.
In conclusion, your organization has a lot to gain from utilizing a data quality solution, but as this article demonstrates, you also have plenty to lose if you don’t. For more information on finding the right data quality solution, get in touch today.