There’s been a veritable information explosion in the past few years, with the amount of data generated by consumers and businesses proliferating significantly. Cisco announced that the global mobile data traffic grew by 69 per cent last year, with Australian traffic alone growing by 52 per cent from mid-2013 to mid-2014.
Come 2020, the data that’s created annually will hit 44 trillion gigabytes.
International Data Corporation noted that this wider digital universe is doubling in size every two years. Come 2020, the data that’s created annually will hit 44 trillion gigabytes.
While businesses don’t have to be concerned about these colossal amounts of data, it’s important to look at the information being generated within the company. Specifically, the information of customers.
Reliable, and consistent, information
Think about what happens when we drink a glass of bad water. We often get sick, as our bodies aren’t designed to handle foreign contaminants. It helps to think of a business the same way. When the wrong information is fed into it, it has the propensity to cause more trouble than it’s worth.
When this is bad customer data specifically, the problems are often more difficult to deal with. As customers are the lifeblood of a company, much like water is to a human, businesses cannot afford to take any missteps with regard to their information.
Synchronising customer information
It’s not altogether difficult to change how customer data is managed within the organisation, but there are a number of required approaches. In many cases, it’s a good idea to carry out these processes with a capable provider, and one skilled in areas such as master data management.
Creating logical links between records is a necessary step to identify any existing relationships between data. It’s essentially a powerful way of opening up insight into the patterns that exist in business data. Over time, this can help to grow the business’s understanding of the various relationships that exist between customers.
This extends to new customer data too, as when new information is added to a system it’s set up and linked correctly.
For businesses that have been accumulating customer data for some time, there are bound to be duplicate records of the customer data. De-duplication directly addresses this problem by identifying the records that represent the same customer (based on pre-defined criteria) and taking steps to merge this information.
Organisations are left with a cleaner customer database, and one that only includes the most relevant, up-to-date information.
In a similar vein, data matching compares data sets to pre-defined matching rules as a way of identifying relationships within the information. When staff go to search for a set of customer data, they’re presented with the most relevant match. This is especially important for those businesses with multiple operating locations, as there are bound to be duplicate sets.
While the primary objective of clearing up data is to eliminate the issues that arise from multiple customer entries across multiple systems, there are a number of other benefits.
Perhaps most importantly, the business is able to create complete and accurate customer data (a process that can then be maintained for new customers) as a way of ensuring sustainable relationship management. This means, in turn, there’s a lower chance of customer issues arising with regards to customer data.
Clearing up customer data and establishing a correct view of this information is a necessary undertaking, and it’s one that will likely continue to grow in importance as the amount of data continues to grow.
Reach out to us to find out more about why customer synergy is so important and the necessary courses of action to put the practices into effect.