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Clean data . . . clean business

by Jodee Hale-Schmid

August 6, 2010

Authored by Tony Stypinski, Client Partner-West, Utopia, Inc.

Ever have a new project manager, ask you the old saw: “How do you want your project delivered: on time, on budget, highest quality? Pick two!”

Fortunately, for business and data, the choice between clean data / clean[ly run] business does not have to be exclusive. In fact, they are more inseparable than most would think. Cleanly run businesses thrive on clean data, the lifeblood of informed strategy, competitiveness, and success. And these days it’s becoming easier and easier to insure clean data as the underpinning of a well-run business.

This is thanks to wider recognition of the importance of data governance to the accuracy of data and the growing adoption of data cleansing tools as part of an integrated approach to managing data from inception and during its lifecycle through to archival. Data governance programs recognize the importance of having good data to run a business well, and provide support for the concept and resources to make it happen.

Particularly when businesses are large and have multiple sources of data – think regionalized customer and v endor databases, general ledgers for different divisions and countries – clean data is vital for consolidated reporting across the enterprise. As BI and data warehousing technology has grown in prominence, so has the need for good quality underlying data. Without excellent data, how can sense be made of the business, how can strategic direction be planned, and how can execution against the plan be measured? The data has to be clean in order for the business to clean the competition.

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