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Finding Data Quality in the Cloud

August 15, 2012 No Comments

By: Henrik Liliendahl Sørensen, Owner, Liliendahl Limited

Practically every single organization on this planet is struggling with data quality issues. The single most frequent data quality issue is about the quality of contact data.

Getting it right the first time

Getting contact data right the first time is paramount in fighting poor data quality when it comes to registering master data about prospects, customers, employees, suppliers and other business partners.  Having the right data from the start helps with business process efficiency and is a prerequisite for being able to maintain the data when they change in the real world.

The problem with capturing the right data has traditionally been that external reference data hasn’t been available in the business processes where data are entered.

Looking into the cloud

Today there is a lot of external reference data for contact master data available in the cloud. Traditional directory services have been put online and are available on websites and in many cases through some kind of web services. Social network profiles are added and maintained by the individuals themselves around the clock.

However, data entry staff hasn’t got the time to gather all this information and select the bits and pieces necessary for getting every single registration accurate and complete from the beginning. Add to that the daunting task of doing this in an international environment, being the reality for many organizations today who is working in a globalized world.

Getting it done

A classic answer has been cleansing and matching the contact data many times long after they have been entered and already consumed in various business processes and spread into data silos all around.

The better choice is looking into cloud service brokerage, where you implement a single user interface mashing up all the relevant external reference data services into one compact picture about the real world related to an address, business entity and/or consumer/citizen.

As said, the data is out there in the cloud. There are privacy concerns, but the data available today within legal and responsible frames are plentiful. Exploiting these data and integrating them smoothly into data entry processes is big chance for finally getting something sustainable done about the bad contact data that is costing organizations huge sums in scrap, rework and lost opportunities.


HenrikHenrik has worked in the IT business since 1980 with application development, migration, project management and business management in a large range of business areas as government, insurance, manufacturing, membership, healthcare, public transportation, retail and more. Since 1995 he has focused on Data Quality Improvement and Master Data Management. He’s keen on exploring new frontiers within data quality and the use of master and reference data. Today he is the owner of London-based consultancy, Liliendahl Limited. He is very active in the social media community around data quality and MDM. This includes having a blog called Liliendahl on Data Quality and being the moderator of 3 groups on LinkedIn: Data Matching, Multi-Domain MDM and Social MDM. See for more about Henrik.

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