September 1, 2010 – Business executives have surprisingly shifted their focus on data quality because of customer service concerns – and not just finding efficiencies – in the last year, according to a new study of data quality by Experian QAS.

The study of about 300 executive-level business people in the U.S. by the private data quality firm took nearly three weeks and targeted responses on how data is gathered, maintained and verified.

Nearly half of the respondents noted that “customer satisfaction” was the primary reason for establishing data quality controls and overhauls, as opposed to the search for savings and efficiencies. Joel Curry, chief operating officer with Experian QAS, said today that the new top answer could be the result of a strengthening economy or corporate financial constraint.

“Twelve months ago, we would have seen very few people respond with ‘customer satisfaction’,” Curry said.

Other key figures from business leaders in the research, set for release Thursday, include:
 


  • 48 percent of organizations use manual processes to measure the accuracy of contact data.
  • 41 percent of organizations say IT is responsible for data quality.
  • 69 percent of organizations have or are currently working on a contact data management strategy.
  • 84 percent of organizations say they plan to invest or should consider investing in data quality initiatives over the next year.

Ultimately, Curry said that management of data quality in the U.S. is gaining traction with corporate partners, though is too often relegated to a single department or dealt with in dated ways. He cited the large percentage of business leaders in the study who focus on the costly and time-consuming scrubbing of incorrect contact information on the back end as opposed to installing modern, quality management systems.
“I can’t think of any other function in a business where that would be allowable,” Curry said.

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