Data Hygiene Doesn’t Need to Be a Full-Time Job

5 minutes
Jun 29, 2022
Data Management

Operations roles are designed to play a pivotal role in your organization. They should ensure all of your technology runs smoothly, integrates well with other platforms, and offers incisive insights...

Operations roles are designed to play a pivotal role in your organization. They should ensure all of your technology runs smoothly, integrates well with other platforms, and offers incisive insights into the performance of your business.

But operations employees are often relegated to becoming data custodians — spending their days inputting data, updating existing lists, or chasing down errors that prevent accurate reporting. This represents a big missed opportunity.

Data Reconciliation Wastes Time and Talent

Operations roles attract big thinkers, people who can perform deep analysis and discover new angles you hadn’t previously noticed. Why should their role be reduced to spending hours mindlessly clicking buttons within your CRM and reconciling data between platforms — often manually by downloading, reformatting, scrubbing, and re-uploading CSV files?

A proactive approach to data hygiene frees up your operations team to uncover important insights and saves your company tons of money. 

Bad data costs companies 12% of their revenue, every year. Solving your data hygiene problem will empower your operations team to do what they’re best at, and increase the amount of revenue you capture.

Here’s how you can organize your business so data hygiene problems are a thing of the past and your operations team can make a bigger impact.

Audit Your Tech Stack

With over 8,000 sales and marketing technologies available, it’s increasingly difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff when it comes to what will actually help your business.

Data can quickly become out-of-date or duplicated when you have multiple technologies. If integrations aren’t properly optimized, or technology is being brought on board quicker than you can plan for, your data will suffer as a result. 

Performing an audit of your existing technologies is a perfect first step toward the path of data enlightenment. As you evaluate each of your existing platforms, ask the following questions:

  • Are there overlapping capabilities between systems?
  • Is data being duplicated anywhere?
  • Which platform serves as our source of truth?
  • Are permissions correctly set to ensure tight control of data?
  • What integrations exist, and which way is data flowing?
  • How often does each technology refresh its data?

Asking and answering those questions will provide a clear picture of which technologies are mission critical, which are nice-to-have, and which could be causing costly data issues.

Create an Automated Source of Truth

After you’ve audited your tech stack, it’s time to create a source-of-truth for your sales, marketing, and operations teams. 

Often, marketing leverages a marketing automation platform for its email campaigns and other touch points. Sales spends its days logging activity within their CRM. Operations is building dashboards and reports across a number of tools, while trying to keep everything clean.

But if there’s nothing acting as a central repository for that all data, things can quickly go haywire. The only way to ensure your revenue-driving activities are as efficient as possible is to provide data that is accurate and consistently up-to-date.

To sidestep any potential issues with duplicated data, or unsynced information, leverage a platform that can act as a central source of truth. The qualities to look for when deciding on a central data hub include:

  • Does it have strong integrations with our most important tools?
  • Is it easily accessible for every team that needs it?
  • How does the platform make our processes smoother?
  • Are we unlocking better reporting and insights by using it?
  • Does it make our data better?

That last bullet point is crucial. Any old database can store some dusty numbers and files. But what your business needs is a technology that helps you maintain and improve your internal data.

Technologies that leverage an embedded CDP don’t just help you store your own data, they can also unlock historical and more in-depth data about your audiences. 

When you utilize an embedded CDP that leverages AI-driven intent data and predictive capabilities, you gain access to critical information like:

  • An accurate ideal-customer profile (ICP) based on historical data
  • A list of which of your ICPs are in-market for your solutions
  • Insights into the research your buyers are performing
  • Enhanced demographic, firmographic, and technographic data
  • Insights into the number of prospects in each pipeline stage, and best next steps to move them forward

With a source of truth for your data, you solve hygiene problems and give all of your information a huge boost. 

Unleash Your Operations Team’s Full Potential

Even if you’ve solved all of your data hygiene challenges, that doesn’t mean your operations team is automatically positioned to win.

To provide the best value possible, your operations team needs the right tools and technology to maximize revenue generation by providing clear roadmaps to success.

Here’s how you can give your marketing and sales teams information that will: 

1. Provide Marketing with Better Audience Insights

Marketing relies on operations for lists and audience segments to run its campaigns. 

Operations shouldn’t let marketing rely on simple list buys. Marketing should be informed about who its ideal customers are based on real historical data, and the buying signals those audiences are giving off. 

Instead of delivering static .CSV files, operations should create dynamic segments based on the real actions your audience is taking. Intent Data can reveal: 

  • Which accounts that fit your ICP are currently in-market for a solution
  • What research is being done by people at those accounts, on your digital properties, and on key third-party websites
  • Where the account is in its buyer journey, and the types of information and outreach that will have the most impact

Marketing’s campaigns become supercharged when it knows exactly what actions its targeted audience has taken, and their real-time position in the buying journey.

2. Arm Sales with Information about Who to Target and When

The best thing operations teams can do to help out sellers is give them a chance to generate more revenue. Sellers are constantly searching for the next deal and the hidden golden prospect that’s out there somewhere.

Operations can shine a light on those prospects by delivering sales with real-time insights on their prospects who are in-market and ready to buy

Instead of throwing a dart at a giant list of prospects, sellers should be served accurate data on who they should be prioritizing. Operations can give sellers a laser accurate plan-of-attack to help increase their odds of closing a deal.

Conclusion

Your operations team should be one of the most important departments within your organization. But if its members are simply focused on cleaning up databases and inputting data, they’re not able to reach their full potential. Enable them to deliver real-time insights that will drive revenue.