6 Things You Can Do To Improve Your Microsoft Dynamics 365 Data

Melissa AU Team | Australia, Data Quality | , ,

Since its launch a few years ago, Microsoft Dynamics 365 has repeatedly proved how it can benefit organizations. It empowers companies to offer better customer service, higher marketing conversions, better sales and more reliable analysis.

In today’s world, data handling and customer service are the most important factors determining a company’s chances of success. Of course, to experience these benefits, you must work with trustworthy data.

Unfortunately, as a survey found, 47% of enterprises do not trust their CRM data to be a “single source of truth” for their customers. These enterprises and all others know that they need to improve the quality of data they work with to maximize the potential of Microsoft Dynamics 365.

The question is – how?

1. Involve The Accounts Team To Quantify Urgency

Improving data quality is no one person’s responsibility. It must be shared by the IT team as well as business users. Hence, the first thing to do is to make sure everyone understands the need for improving data quality.

A good way to do this is by exhibiting the commercial implications of working with poor-quality data. Ask the accounts team to calculate how much it costs the company to reship orders because of incomplete addresses or how much the company could save when they don’t send customers duplicate mail. This will help everyone on the team understand the urgency with which data quality needs to be addressed and accept responsibility for it.

2. Don’t Assume What You Don’t Know

When designing customer input forms, companies tend to assume that customers know what is to be entered in each field and that they will enter the correct details. But, typographic errors happen. In fact, they account for up to 58% of data inaccuracy issues. People also enter the wrong details intentionally. They may not want to be contacted by salespeople or they may have fraud on their minds.

Do not make such assumptions. Instead, design and implement measures that address data input errors. For example, use an autocomplete API for address fields and allow customers to pick domain names for email addresses from a drop-down menu instead of having to type them.

3. Accept That You Don’t Know Everything

When you see an address with Melbourne listed as the city name, you might assume that the customer is in Australia. But, did you know that Melbourne is also the name of a city in Florida?

Sometimes, customer data may look correct at first glance but a more detailed look will help you identify errors. According to Harvard Business Review, even when companies work hard on their due diligence at the data entry stage, 47% of new records have at least one error.

Accept the possibility of human error and automate verification as much as possible. Compare all data inputs against reliable third-party databases for real-time verification.

4. Remember, Data Ages

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 8.9 million people have changed their addresses. How many of these people do you think updated their addresses with the eCommerce websites they shop from? People get married and change their names. They switch jobs and email addresses. Customer data decays at an average rate of 30% annually.

Working on decayed data costs organizations time and money. Thankfully, this problem can be handled with regular data cleaning.

Depending on your industry, you may choose to clean your data weekly, monthly or at other regular intervals. This type of regular cleaning can highlight and remove records with email addresses, phone numbers, street addresses, etc. that are no longer valid.

In cases where street addresses become outdated because of changes made by the city administration, such as, new street names, address verification tools can update outdated details.

5. Recognize Country-Specific Formats

When you have international customers, you must recognize that every country may have different formats for street addresses, phone numbers, etc. For example, the USA has 5+4 digit zip codes while Iran has 10-digit zip codes. Similarly, the length of country codes for phone numbers also varies.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is designed to manage global data but before you can set it up to do so, you must address these differences in standardized formatting. For this, you need to work with a data verification tool that can handle global data formats and verify addresses to local postal formats for all the countries that you serve.

6. Scale Consciously

As your business grows, you need to scale up your database as well. Microsoft develops and upgrades at quite a fast pace and you need to keep up with certifications and version upgrades.

It is important not to hardwire your database verification system too. Design a system that can grow with your needs. As your company grows so will the data you have access to. Hence, your verification tool needs to be able to handle the additional records.

How Can Melissa Help?

When it comes to data verification, Melissa is a leading global solutions provider that can be seamlessly integrated with Microsoft Dynamics 365. The Melissa CRM Suite for Salesforce & Microsoft Dynamics CRM keeps all customer data accurate and up-to-date. This includes customer names, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses.

At the data capturing stage, an autocomplete API minimizes the risk of typographic errors and improves the customer experience. It reduces keystrokes by up to 50%. Contacts can be verified in real-time to keep bad data from entering your system. Melissa also offers batch processing options to fight data decay and ensure that your database contains updated, current information.

In addition to data verification, Melissa can enrich your data with valuable demographic and firmographic inferences. This is critical for lead scoring, targeting and audience segmentation for your marketing campaigns.

Melissa’s webservices can be used to verify and standardize addresses and phone numbers in over 240 countries. This will help in improved deliverability of mailers to optimized operational costs to more satisfied customers. It’s easy to integrate with your existing systems and suits businesses in all industries. So, are you ready to get started?