Making plans to move all your current Marketing, Sales or Partner data to a new platform with a new data schema can be a daunting process.
However, there are some steps you need to take before you move your data so as to ensure that there are no serious issues. Moving bad data into a new system still makes the whole process bad, after all. You want your entire staff to be having full confidence in the new platform, and thorough data preparation is the best first step you can adopt.
You should look at the following steps during data evaluation process
- Identify and merge duplicate records: this is one of the first and most important steps if you want to have clean data. Duplicate records occur over time and are often created during an online experience (often by the users themselves). This makes data to be in fragments, and it makes any reporting and evaluation nearly impossible.
There are duplicate detection programs that do well at identifying duplicate records and are based on your set rules, but merging and deleting them is done manually since human judgment is a huge necessity during the process of evaluation. Therefore, companies with limited time and resources often hire professional data cleaning services companies such as StrategicDB.
The process is cumbersome but necessary, so begin to plan for it the moment you start to consider moving to a new a new platform. That way you will be able to break the whole process into smaller, actionable steps.
- Clean up all bad data: data is only useful when it’s correct and up-to-date. Incorrect data hinder you from accessing vital information about various aspects of your company and business.
Spotting and cleaning up information before data migration wins the trust and confidence of your staff when the actual migration is being carried out. They are confident in the result and the whole system.
One common way of updating the information of customers during data migration is an email that leads them to your website with instructions on how to update their information. The data to focus on during this process include email addresses, addresses, and phone numbers. Concentrate on collecting the most important data.
Data is an aspect that should be given more consideration. Old and irrelevant data should be discarded so your team can be confident that you are only making use of appropriate data during the migration.
Data should also be normalized to make sure you are matching the new data schema. An example of this would be making sure all country names are the same for the same country, states are standardized and phone numbers are in a standard form.
- Evaluate what data needs migration: you need to determine which data is valuable and which data is not relevant anymore. Find out through a comprehensive data evaluation process.
Take a look at demographic or company data that might have changed over time and update them accordingly. You may also want to consider demographic data that do not have a clear purpose. Also, try focusing on data that has current value and discard the rest.
Another important point in the evaluation process is determining which data are active enough to be considered for migration. More options don’t necessarily lead to better results. Here are some questions you may want to consider:
- If you haven’t contacted an individual or company for several years, should you still move their data? How do you know if such data are still correct, after all?
- What historical data should be included in the migration process? Some sales history may be irrelevant. Evaluate the most important data and the ones that just slow down searches unnecessarily.
It pays off to work diligently to clean up your data before migration, and it also saves you time during the actual migration by making it unnecessary to have to troubleshoot bad data.
For all you data clean-up, data deduping or data normalization needs, StrategicDB can help!