It's believed that dirty data, or bad data, costs the US economy a staggering $3.1 trillion every year, according to an IBM survey. Dirty data is no small problem – and unfortunately, the death care industry is not immune to its effects.
If you're using digital cemetery software, funeral arrangement software, or marketing automation software of any kind, you may have one or several databases of information; this might include family contacts, cemetery records, and so on. If this data is of high quality, you can use it to improve your day-to-day operations, communicate clearly with customers and staff, meet your compliance needs, and make informed decisions about the future of your organization. But what happens if that data isn't of high quality?
Dirty data refers to data that might be inaccurate, is poorly structured, is duplicated or is incomplete. The value and usefulness of your data is directly related to its accuracy. As such, dirty data can be as bad as no data at all – in fact, it could even lead you confidently in the wrong direction when it comes to making plans and decisions.
Within the death care profession, there are several ways that dirty data can cost your business.
Put simply, anything that compromises your datasets could be bad data. These are the most common issues:
It can take just a few steps to ensure your datasets are clean and accurate.
It's worth cleaning up datasets wherever possible on a regular basis. It might take some time for someone to go through the database and repair missing or inconsistent data, but it could have significant benefits for the organization.
This step might include making certain online form fields mandatory so that all fresh data is entered accurately, or ensuring existing data is stored correctly. If your funeral planning software or cemetery software is outdated, consider an upgrade.
Human error can be a significant cause of bad data, so it's crucial to ensure your staff are trained on the importance and correct handling of data. Taking a few seconds to enter information correctly could save countless hours in the future.
Data silos in your systems or between different systems can lead to duplicated and inconsistent data, so be sure to use a comprehensive system that creates one source of truth for the organization. Access permissions can be used to restrict sensitive or irrelevant data for specific users or departments.
Dirty data in your funeral planning software or digital cemetery software could be costing you when it comes to compliance, opportunities, time and resources.With a little 'data housekeeping' and the right systems in place, you'll be empowered to optimize your customer service and drive your future decisions with clarity.