Tag Archives: Address Validation

What Would Retail Peak Season Be Like Without Address Data Quality?

Address Data Quality

Why You NEED Address Data Quality

Reliable shipping is something customers take for granted, and never more so than during the holidays.

Peak season is here, and delivery companies have plans in place to successfully deliver every last package:

  • The USPS added delivery on Sunday and Christmas Day this year, after last year’s double-digit rise in package volumes during peak season.
  • In December alone, the United Parcel Service (UPS) forecasts it will deliver 585 million packages, an increase of 11% over last year.
  • UPS is also investing $175 million for its peak season preparedness plan, and will add 95,000 season workers (which is nearly 10 times the number of Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, employees in 2013).
  • According to the National Retail Federation, 44% of consumers will do their shopping on the web, which translates to a lot of deliveries.

For retailers, that means a lot of addresses in your company’s database. This will lead to a copious amount of deliveries.

The big rise in deliveries this year got me thinking: What would the holidays be like if there were no such thing as a postal address?

It’s safe to say, the holidays would be a lot less cheery. With our current reliance on mapping applications, it would be tough to get from home to the new toy store and back. Sadly, a lot of holiday greeting cards would get stamped “return to sender.” And without mapping applications or GPS, it would take a little more effort to get to grandmother’s house this year.

I think the only person who would be successfully delivering any gifts this year would be Santa (since he has his own rooftop-to-rooftop accuracy built in with his magical sleigh.)

Of course, one of the biggest places impacted would be the retail industry. The peak season at the end of the year is the time for retail businesses to make or break their reputations.

With the increased volume of deliverability, what mistakes might occur if all address data suddenly disappeared?

In a season without address data quality, your reputation and company could suffer in a number of ways:

  • Faulty addresses mean a weak customer database
  • Erroneous shipping means you’ll paying for delivery, returns, and re-delivery
  • Loss of customers and hurt reputations during peak sales time

A truly data-centric company treats address data as the foundation for customer information, and this would be more challenging to do without quality address verification.

In a peak season without address verification, I imagine companies would have to turn to alternative means to estimate locations and distances such as the geocoding process from Google Maps, which would leave them at a few disadvantages as delivery trucks navigate the icy roads during wintertime.

Informatica’s Address Validation offers these benefits that Google Maps’ geocoding does not, including:

  • Address validation and corrections
  • Availability as an on-premise solution for customer security and privacy
  • User-friendly experience as a leader in lookup and cleansing for 20+ years
  • Exact geocoding for properties (not estimates or approximations)
  • Partnership with the Universal Postal Union and all five existing global postal certifications

Approximate locations and uncertified data won’t cut it when customers expect on-time delivery, every time. Along with these benefits that make it invaluable for customer shipping and other postal mail uses, Informatica’s Address Validation sets the standard in 240 countries and territories.

Luckily, we do not live in a world without address quality. It is possible to ensure every last package and parcel makes it to its destination on time, while making it to grandmother’s house on time, sending greeting cards to our whole list, and bringing home lovingly selected gifts from the store to wrap and tuck under the tree.

How do you measure how your company is rating with its customer address quality? You can get started with this ebook from Informatica, “Three Ways to Measure Address Quality.”

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Posted in Data Quality, Data Services, Retail | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Informatica Advances Cloud Integration and Data Quality

Informatica Cloud Winter 2013 has arrived. This is the fourteenth release of the company’s award-winning family of cloud integration applications and integration platform as a service (iPaaS),  which has now expanded to include Informatica Cloud Master Data Management (MDM). In this post I’ll provide an overview of the new cloud integration and cloud data quality capabilities. Be sure to register for a 30 day trial and/or attend the release webinar on Thursday to see Informatica Cloud in action.

(more…)

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Posted in Cloud Computing, Data Integration, Data Migration, Data Quality, Data Synchronization, Enterprise Data Management, Marketplace, Master Data Management, News & Announcements, PaaS, SaaS | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Five Future Data Matching Trends

Data matching is a core element in many deployments of data quality tools and master data management solutions.

Most data matching implementations are revolving around matching names and addresses. The classic business goals for a data matching activity are removing duplicates and thus avoiding sending the same material twice or even more times to the same real world individual either as a private person or a business contact. (more…)

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Posted in Big Data, Cloud Computing, Data Quality | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Informatica Cloud Winter 2012 Announced

This week we announced the 11th release of Informatica Cloud. What’s Informatica Cloud you ask? Well according to the our 2011 “Best Cloud Management” CODiE Award, Informatica Cloud is an, “easy-to-use, multi-tenant cloud integration service that empowers users to create, schedule and automate bi-directional cloud-to-cloud and cloud-to-on-premise integration tasks without coding and without requiring a hardware appliance.”

This is an important release for 4 reasons:

  1. Informatica has expanded our cloud integration service to data quality
  2. We have greatly expanded our cloud connectivity
  3. We continue to deliver enterprise-class functionality via the cloud
  4. We are broadening the capabilities of Informatica Cloud Express, our pay-as-you-go cloud service. (more…)
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Posted in Business/IT Collaboration, Cloud Computing, Data Quality, Marketplace, News & Announcements, PaaS, SaaS | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Locations Are Not Addresses

In my last post, I shared a minor epiphany I experienced working on a project to merge data sets from two different oil companies in which I fully recognized the difference between an address and a location. Borrowing from an assortment of definitions, a location describes a point or an area within a dimensional space. A location is frequently mapped to two dimensions on the surface of the earth, usually latitude and longitude, but may encompass three dimensions (including altitude). On the other hand, an address is a text string that is formatted according to a definition provided by a postal authority representing a location directing parcel or package delivery. (more…)

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Posted in Data Governance, Data Quality, Master Data Management, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 26 Comments

“The 9 Dirty Little Secrets Of CRM”

I read an article the other day called the “The 9 Dirty Little Secrets of CRM”. As a user of CRM systems for many years including salesforce.com (which I rate highly), I agree with many of the statements around the secrets of successful CRM. Firstly it’s all about the data! If high quality data is entered and data quality processes are in place to maintain the data, then user adoption will grow and the CRM implementation will be perceived to be a success.

The first step is a data quality audit/assessment which identifies data quality issues associated with the key data fields which drive your processes. Let’s assume a data quality audit results in a score of 65% – this means that your CRM processes will be only 65% effective due to the quality of the data. So if the CRM application is to support “attracting and retaining” customers and “increasing revenues via cross-selling”, management need to be very aware of the impact low quality data has on the effectiveness of the CRM processes. The data quality metrics are based on defining data quality dimensions including completeness, conformity, consistency, duplicates and accuracy, and applying these dimensions to the data fields. So for example a customer or prospect record includes the name, address, email and telephone number fields. Each field can be audited using several dimensions. The results are aggregated, resulting in the overall score e.g. in this case 65% – which is for many unacceptable. (more…)

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The Importance Of AddressDoctor To Informatica Customers

This week, we announced the acquisition of AddressDoctor, the market leader of global address validation with coverage for over 200 countries and territories. This is another example of how we are continually working to deliver the most advanced data quality products to our customers. Address Doctor provides an address validation engine which is already fully integrated into Informatica Data Quality.  This acquisition is simply another step towards market leadership for Informatica in the enterprise data quality market. Rob Karel from Forrester referred to our vision of pervasive data quality – supporting all roles, all applications, all data domains and all stages of the data integration lifecycle in his blog.

Let’s focus on “all data domains” and how the AddressDoctor acquisition supports this key criteria for successful enterprise data quality. (more…)

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