Silos often prevent organizations from making accurate decisions, as the necessary data remains “sealed” within them.
They prevent you from getting a complete overview, essential to go in the right direction, remain competitive and be resilient to the changeability of the market.
But how are these silos formed? They are often the result of a wrong data integration, or a failure to manage them. This is one of the main reasons why only 3% of organizations’ data meets basic quality requirements.
This is what emerges from a research in the Harward Business Review, which also highlights the concept of how problematic it is for managers to deal with poor quality data.
Invalid data wastes time, increases costs exponentially, makes decision-making less effective, threatens to ruin the relationship with customers and makes it difficult to implement initiatives or strategies based on them.
After this brief introduction, let’s understand how to avoid this research avoiding to fall back in the remaining 97%, and how an excellent starting point can be the evaluation of the customer data integration strategy.
What is customer data integration?
Let’s start from the beginning. Customer data integration refers to that delicate process of combining and disposing customer data from different forms, so that it can be used by all stakeholders and to improve analysis capabilities.
When executed correctly, it is definitely a noteworthy component in the data strategy definition. This is because it is able to allow a better decision-making process, informed, getting to enrich the BI, and offering a complete view of the customer.
In other way, when it is not executed correctly, it can penalize the organization, slowing down its processes.
What are the benefits? That’s why you should pay attention to integrating your customers’ data.
Increase security with a single access point
Organizing customer data in a single access point also means having a greater focus on the security factor, and therefore on who will have access to it.
Imagine that you don’t have this data properly integrated. IT should create multiple accesses for a single user, which could also enable them to access information they shouldn’t. What if it then changes job or task? It would be necessary to make changes on different sources/tools.
It is also worth stressing how much this is GDPR compliance. A single point means having only one platform to delete or modify customer data. Without it you would find yourself juggling different separate points to perform the same tasks.
Bye bye silos
As we mentioned in the introduction, silos can be a problem because the organization will not be able to fully exploit the power of data (and will therefore leave somewhere hidden important information about customers and potential ones). This could frustrate marketing efforts and related campaigns if, for example, the sales team does not have the appropriate information at the right time.
This also prevents the same data from being collected more than once, resulting in redundant management.
Accurate data for winning analytics
If the data is not integrated properly, you will need to perform your analysis using information organized in multiple systems or even spreadsheets. Here again we talk about poor quality of the result.
Why? Data from different systems may not be identical and this makes it difficult to figure out which of the options is the correct one, or, using Excel sheets, it may be easy to get confused and only edit one sheet and not another. That’s how you find yourself navigating through dirty data.
Data integration is a flexible process and can be accomplished in multiple ways and in multiple methods, and is a key step to becoming a data driven company, that has a complete view of customers and the ability to make the relevant decisions on sound and reliable data.
There are many tools for data integration. Which one should your organization choose? Are you evaluating? The answer lies between your needs and your expectations, and a competent team like ours is able to support you.