Manal Ghandour Manal Ghandour Moderator

Data Quality is important to every organization!

Dear Colleagues,
Allow me to share you with how Data Quality is important to every organization. I wil quote for you from the below resouce some highlights! "Companies typically have not taken ...approach to improving the quality of its data production and maintenance. The quality of information that serves as the cornerstone of virtually every critical business process-customer intelligence, billing, accounting,inventory, management, product development...is typically an unknown in most organizations. This leaves both, It and business staffs to wonder: is the data reliable? Can you use this data to make informed , rational decisions? more importantly, do we know how much nonquality information costs the enterprise when it causes processes to fail and alienate your customer?".

First, let us agree on data quality meaning for the sake of people who are new to the concept. Secondly, to be sure that we are talking a bout same operational definition.

Data quality is about the complete set of interactions of people and information they need to perform their work effectively and effeciently, whether creating data or applying it. Data quality is, “consistently meeting all knoweledge workers and end-customers expectations through information and information services, to accomplish knowledge worker objectives and customer objectives”.

If the information is accurates, complete, timely, unique, consistent and valid, you have high quality information that can serve as foundation for effective business strategies.

There are two main steps to build reliable business information:
1. Implement a data correction process and technology solution that helps you parse,standarize, verify and correct key pieces of data. With this functionality in place, you can cleanse data in batch to make sure that high quality data reaches your business-critical systems and enables your knowledge workers to take the right actions and make the right decisions.

In this perspective we did not yet have the technology solution that checks the data, we check them manually. But we have created many predesigned formats that have mandatory field to be filled. So data shortage is overcomed. All data are posted into File net program, so that every body can access the same report provided that he has the proper access level. So one document for all is the start. There will be no chances for duplication of records. Every type of data is assigned to a person who should verify it. As soon as data filed into file net, the verifier will receive a message to notify him and ask him to verify that particular file. More over, all persons who works on that document can give feedback or comments. Comments will be viewed by all concerned as well. On top we have aqquired another software which is EPR (Entreprise Projects Resource Management ) which supervise and controls all due and finished tasks, it traces every form and every piece of information, when it should be ready and send reminders for users and mangers.

2. Implement a process improvement and technology solution that transforms the culture and improves business processes to eliminate or significantly reduce defective data from being produced in the first place. You can use the PDCA (Plan ,do,Check (Deming changed it recently to study which is more broad than ckeck), Act) approach to create better processes for creating, updating, managing and exploiting information for competitive advantage.

This is what we are working on it extensively, every time we need to share data, we create task force group who will set together, specify requirements and usage, come up with guidelines, procedure or process and produce a predesigned document format.

The best comprehensive document that I read till todate about Data quality is from this below source, interested people can read it fully.

Data Quality, Standardize, Validate and Improve Your Information Assets, prepared by: Larry English, Information Impact International & the DataFlux Corporation. 02/2004, Copyright © 2004 DataFlux Corporation, Cary,NC, USA.

Best wishes and Regards,
Manal Ghandour,
22/12/2006