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Data quality emerges as key driving force behind business management

If there was ever any doubt about the importance of data quality in the process of making important business decisions, recent research from Inside Reference Data should be enough to quell that doubt. IRD recently held a webcast for business executives in which data management was discussed, and many identified quality data as a top priority.

IRD polled webcast viewers, asking them, "What is the greatest driver behind new data management practices?" A plurality of 46.7 percent tabbed seeking higher-quality data as the No. 1 factor. Risk management was second, at 39.3 percent.

Furthermore, 78.8 percent of executives said they believed data quality standards are being raised in today's business climate, whereas only 1.7 percent said they were being lowered. When asked whether real-time data was a part of the discussion, 67.3 percent said that it was relevant for global firms.

Ludwig D'Angelo, the New York-based executive director for JP Morgan CIB, was one participant in the IRD webcast, and he said data quality was a top priority, but that there are other factors to consider as well.

"The optimal environment is one that provides the best quality data with the fewest exceptions - exceptions that can generally only be cleared with production manpower," D'Angelo said. "You want to provide the best-quality data for your organization, but at the same time, you want your operating model to be fully scalable to increases in instruments and/or asset classes and subscriber applications."

The power of real-time data
The business world is still only beginning to explore the full extent of what real-time data can do. For example, some firms have begun exploring its marketing potential - a recent eWayDirect poll of 350 business-to-consumer marketers found that two-thirds of companies are using "real-time targeting to add new customers and fuel revenue growth." In other words, companies are taking data and turning it into tangible business results quickly and effectively. Chris Dailey, the firm's senior vice president of sales and account management, spoke to the importance of using data in real time.

"When you have someone on your website right now looking at dresses, why worry about all of the money to mine all of that data?" Dailey said. "She's in your store right now looking at a dress. Talk to her about a dress!"

Quality data plays a role in every business's growth and marketing potential. Companies that don't make the most of their data are missing out.

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