Ensuring your databases are only containing actionable, high quality data is a layered process. It all starts with data capture, by keeping in line with the 5 steps below it will result in effective organisational success through accurate, valid and actionable data.

What qualifies as high-quality data?

Accuracy – Any data that’s going to be stored into your CRM databases must be collected without errors. Accurate data assists companies in making well-informed decisions about expansions, the goods they stock and offer, organisational procedures, promotions, goals, and downsizing decisions. Ensuring data is captured accurately at the first step means it can then be repurposed later for multiple uses.

Validity – Gathering only relevant information and keeping them uncluttered of useless information will keep data sets valid and free up more time and admin resources. Stamping out any invalid data at the time of entry ensures the best possible information for reporting. This issue is more of a factor with the process rather than the result, so addressing this issue will require a look at how you operate your whole process from start to finish.

Actionability/ Timeliness – How quickly can you use the data once it has been collected? Real-time solutions have become standard for any data capture practice. Going paperless with your means of data capture decreases lag time between collection, storage and usage.

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5 steps to collecting high quality data

Operate with low burden processes

Adopting a data capture method that can be learnt and carried out easily by both your employees and your prospects is crucial. The smoother the experience for both parties the more efficiently data can be captured. By doing this you can maximise the amount of time spent dealing with face to face interactions.

Incorporating automated processes play a critical part in lowering the burden of your data capture process. Software like optical character recognition (OCR) can be used for business card scanning. Giving you the ability to collect only highquality data you need from a prospect and have it in your CRM in the time it takes to take a picture. More features like data validation for email and phone fields help ensure you’ve collected this critical information accurately.

Ability to adapt

Staying away from any rigidity in your processes, like your form structures, will have a positive impact on the quality of the data you’re able to collect. New information often needs to be included in order to keep your data valid. Having the ability to adapt forms to be able to collect new and relevant data will keep your CRM’s filled with high quality data. Without this data does not reliably depict the world you are measuring.

Timely informed decisions

Operating with real-time data and timely analytics allows you to make more effective decisions at a more efficient pace. With data capture software being so accessible today. Even our everyday devices i.e. smartphones and tablets have the capabilities to capture and process large sums of data and store it in a cloud database in seconds with minimal training.

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Ensuring compliance

Guaranteeing the data you collect falls in line with GDPR compliance is a must when operating within the EU. GDPR pushes more responsibility onto the organisations whilst increasing the rights of individuals. Data mapping will help you stay in line with GDPR, having the ability to understand how data moves through your organisation by keeping an inventory will demonstrate that you comply.

Review and update your privacy policy to effectively communicate the legal basis for processing data, the right to complain and whether or not their data will be subjected to automated decision making and their rights under GDPR, dictates whether or not you are compliant. This information must be delivered in concise, easy to understand language. By sticking to the guides and stipulations set out by GDPR you will ensure your data can be utilised globally.

Effective data management

Once you’ve streamlined your data capture process with the previous 4 steps and now have the confidence that what’s stored in your CRM is high quality data. A level of thought needs to be dedicated as to how you are going to manage said data. With lacklustre management, even the highest quality data will degrade over time. Regular updating of lead information must be carried out to keep data relevant and prevent it from becoming legacy data.

Being able to maintain and cleanse data will allow you to keep it valid long after collection, by keeping contact details and addresses up to date you can ensure marketing and outreach efforts are never wasted. If you’d like to know more about data cleansing techniques read our blog on choosing the right data cleansing method for you.

If you’re interested in only collecting high quality data get in contact with one of our experts to discuss your project.

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