Preparing your data for analytics is crucial. Unless you have reliable, agreed-upon processes that validate and accurately capture the data, even the best analytics tools can only do so much. Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to identify errors in your data or your processes. From capturing to storage, there are several places where data can go wrong. Even if you record the data correctly, one can still use it the wrong way.
The traditional method of preparing your data for analytics is holistic and sequential. Step by step, you look at how information moves through your data processes. You look for errors and try to correct them. Next, you establish data validation steps, and make sure data’s captured correctly. Finally, you check whether you’re putting the data to use in the right ways.
An Overwhelming Problem
Any complex process can be overwhelming, things can and will get things wrong. At the same time, validation is a challenge. For many organizations, validating data means exporting to Excel and checking data manually. Short of fixing every last process, it’s hard to be sure you’re doing it right. Furthermore, even after an overhaul, there’s still a chance for errors. What you really need is a tool that offers a quick way to check what you’re doing and validate your data.
However, there’s another approach: you can start building charts to use as a validation tool. In some cases, it’s easier explore the data after building the charts to find errors and sniff out their origins.
Data Validation Solution
Margaret Reed, NetSuite administrator at CableOrganizer.com, did just that. Using iCharts, she compared her NetSuite data with the old Excel reports. When reports didn’t match, she used iCharts to dissect the data and get to the root of the problem. “Seeing that the data didn’t match was a red flag for me. Right away, we noticed some issues with procuring the data and how we were entering information into NetSuite. It shined a light on where we could improve,” says Reed. Using iCharts, Reed identified errors in the data better and faster than she could have on her own.
The ability for her to slice-and-dice the NetSuite data with iCharts made it easier for her to find discrepancies. “I was able to pinpoint where we needed to do some investigative work on our processes,” says Reed. For example, with this information, Margaret was able to track some bad data back to a form their sales team uses and was able to fix the process.
Margaret will be sharing her experiences on March 15 in a webinar titled “Readying your NetSuite Processes for Analytics.” where we’ll discuss what she learned throughout her experience as a NetSuite Administrator.
You can sign up to the webinar here. We hope to see you there!