Improve data quality with Melissa Data

Today’s businesses compete on data. As organizations rely on more data sources to improve the effectiveness of their sales and marketing efforts, the need for better data quality becomes obvious. Using Melissa Data’s customer data quality and data integration solutions, more than 5,000 companies are standardizing and verifying international names and addresses, enriching existing data assets, and matching and de-duplicating records.

“We take a smart, sharp tool approach,” said Bud Walker, director of Data Quality Solutions at Melissa Data. “Our APIs and Web services are flexible so they can be used throughout the entire process, including creating data, moving it around, pushing it to data warehouses, and deciding what kind of analysis decision making it is driving.”

Melissa Data has been named to the 2014 SD Times 100 for its breakout contributions to the Database and Data Management category.

Ensure data quality across domains
Melissa Data has been a leading provider of data quality and address management solutions since 1985. Enterprises, government agencies, and other organizations across industries depend on its data quality software, data integration components, APIs, and cloud services to achieve a single, accurate, and trusted view of critical information assets.

Melissa Data’s data quality products are scalable, powerful and cost-effective solutions that guarantee the reliability of data. Its data components provide custom transformations for third party integration software, such as SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS), Pentaho Data Integration, and Pervasive Data Integrator. They parse, cleanse, and verify contact data; match and consolidate related records; and profile and monitor data quality on an ongoing basis.

Various organizations use Melissa Data’s multiplatform contact verification APIs to verify, cleanse, and standardize U.S. and Canadian street addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses, as well as to parse full names, match and consolidate duplicate records, and append latitude and longitude coordinates to street addresses and IP addresses.

“We are becoming a full data uplift provider across all of the domains of customer information, whether it’s names, emails, or street address,” said Walker. “In the past, we validated an address was deliverable, but now we can tell you that Joe Smith’s address is correct, and that he lives at that address, and has lived at that address for some time, which gives you deep verification insight into the data.”

De-duping records is a significant challenge for businesses conflating and migrating data, executing data governance and loading into a data warehouses for business intelligence purposes. To solve this problem, Melissa Data enables advanced de-duping, and the creation of a “Golden Record,” which is a single record with individual elements that have been verified by Melissa Data.

“Before, you might look for the most complete record such as the one that contains a 10-digit phone number, but the number may not be connected, and if you have different two 10-digit numbers, you can’t tell which phone number works,” said Walker. “Now you can have a data quality score based on the validity of individual components, which is a groundbreaking insight.”

Verify information internationally
In addition to enabling finer-grain identity matching, Melissa Data has extended its international address and phone number verification capabilities to include eight additional character sets. Using Melissa Data’s private cloud services, businesses can verify, cleanse and standardize addresses in more than 240 countries in real time despite their disparate address components. Missing components such as a postal code or region are added automatically.

Walker said the global capabilities are fueling Melissa Data’s rapid growth, opening up new opportunities in countries outside the U.S. and Canada as well as expanding existing customer relationships with the more than 900 enterprise customers conducting business overseas.

Integration with popular platforms
Melissa Data also has been partnering with and developing solutions for popular platform providers such as Salesforce, Magento, ShopWare and E-Business Suite so the users of those platforms can create and maintain higher-quality customer records.

“If you’re entering a customer record in Salesforce, you’re at the mercy of what a customer tells you, so you have no way of verifying whether they have given you valid contact information,” said Walker. “We extend and enrich a number of popular platforms so the users of those platforms can be confident about their customer data.”

What’s coming
In the next year, Melissa Data will continue to focus on expanding its international reference data to provide another level of real-time address and phone number verification across the globe. At the present time, customers can tell whether a phone number once worked. Soon, they will know that a particular phone number was disconnected the previous night, for example. To get there, Melissa Data is partnering with telcos and reference data providers while continuing to globalize its innovative product portfolio.

“Our products and solutions are friendly, easy to use, and provide the most comprehensive customer data quality on the market,” said Walker. “Now you can ensure data quality from e-commerce to CRM applications in even more countries.”

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