How to support Data cleansing in D365 Sales and BC with DQ for Excel™ 

Cleansing customer data in Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales and Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central is crucial for maintaining data accuracy, compliance, and overall system efficiency. 

Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you cleanse customer data in both systems: 

1. Backup Your Data

Before making any changes, it’s essential to create a backup of your data. This ensures that you can restore the original data if anything goes wrong during the cleansing process.  To assist you with this we have a capability called replicate data using DQ Studio™.

2. Identify Data Quality Issues

Analyse your existing customer data to identify any quality issues, such as duplicates, incomplete records, outdated information, or data inconsistencies.

This step may involve reviewing records, running reports.

To assist you might consider using our data quality tools including: the DQ for Dynamics™ Suite, or using the DQ for Excel™ Add-In.

3. Define Data Cleansing Rules

Create a set of data cleansing rules and standards that your team will follow.

These rules may include guidelines for data entry, formatting, and validation.  Be specific about how you want your data to look and how it should be structured.

To achieve this you might consider the DQ for Dynamics Suite for data entry using PCF Controls, data maintenance using Power Automate flows and finally, our Dynamics Solution for Record Matching, Mastering and Merging to create a single customer view (SCV), sometimes called a Golden Record

4. Remove Duplicate Records

Use data deduplication tools or manual processes to identify and eliminate duplicate customer records. This helps streamline your data and prevents confusion.

To achieve this you might consider the DQ for Dynamics™ – Consolidate Solution for advanced automation and deduplication, i.e. Record Matching, Mastering and Merging to create a single customer view (SCV), sometimes called a Golden Record.

This solution operates in 5 spoken languages (EN, DE, FR, IT and ES) and uses over 340,000 data points to assist with data normalisation, phonetic encoding and advanced scoring for better matching results

5. Standardise Data

Standardise data formats for fields like addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses. This ensures consistency and makes it easier to search for and analyse customer data.

You can achieve this with the help of our DQ Capture (PCF Controls) for rapid and correct data entry as well as our DQ Cleanse Power Automate flows for dynamic data cleansing.  Both offer email, phone and address standardisation and formatting capabilities to ensure higher quality self-healing CRM data

6. Validate Data

Implement data validation checks to ensure that new data entered into the systems meets your defined standards. For example, validate email addresses, postal/zip codes, or phone numbers to reduce errors.

Like standardisation, the DQ for Dynamics Suite will validate data during data entry or upon a data change event to maintain its quality on a dynamic basis, so the CRM data never gets stale

7. Update Outdated Information

Identify and update outdated or incorrect customer information, such as contact names, addresses, or phone numbers.

To achieve this our DQ for Dynamics Suite, will identify undeliverable mailing addresses, emails that won’t deliver and phones that will not dial. Additionally, our DQ for Excel™ Add-In will identify individuals in the UK who are deceased, have moved location or have expressed a preference not to be called by phone

8. Enrich Data

Consider using third-party data enrichment services to enhance your customer data with additional information like company size, industry, or social media profiles.

To achieve this our DQ for Excel Add-In will enrich UK business and add missing firmographic data and allow you to acquire and refresh Company and Employee data also

9. Deactivate or Archive Old Records

For customers who are no longer active or relevant, consider archiving or deactivating their records instead of deleting them. This preserves historical data while keeping your active records clean.

DQ for Dynamics™ – Consolidate is designed to de-activate and link all related data to the surviving mastered golden record.

You can even de-duplicate and re-assign related data on custom entities if required

10. Establish Data Governance

Implement data governance policies and assign responsibilities to ensure ongoing data quality. Regularly review and maintain data to prevent it from becoming cluttered or outdated.

The DQ for Dynamics Suite adds a custom data audit trail to enable batter data governance.  You can see every data quality improvement action and review in our data quality dashboard

11. Train Users

Provide training to your team members on the importance of data quality and how to enter and maintain clean data. Encourage a culture of data stewardship

12. Monitor Data Quality

Set up ongoing data quality monitoring processes, including periodic data audits and reports to identify and resolve issues promptly.

As in step 10 Establish data governance, using the DQ Audit trail and KPI reporting, you have a constant data audit trail of all DQ Actions performed

13. Document Changes

Keep a record of all data cleansing activities, including what changes were made, when, and by whom. This documentation is valuable for compliance and auditing purposes

14. Test Before and After

Before making any significant data changes, test the cleansing process in a sandbox or test environment to ensure it works as expected without affecting your live data

15. Regularly Review and Improve

Data cleansing is an ongoing process. Continuously review and improve your data quality processes to adapt to changing business needs and evolving data requirements.

Hopefully, by following these steps and establishing a robust data cleansing in D365 process, you will ensure that your customer data in Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales and Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central remains accurate, reliable, and compliant with your business needs. 

We’re here to help. 

DQ for Excel Customer Data Solutions

Designed to improve the quality of your customer data, for optimal business use.

DQ for Excel Data Quality Capabilities

Our comprehensive range of data quality capabilities, all designed to unlock the value in your customer data and guarantee it is fit for its intended use.

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