When is the best time to clean your data?

When is the best time to clean your data?

One of the most common questions I get from my clients who want to clean up their data is "This is all so overwhelming. Where do we start?"

My response is typically: "Start somewhere, and start today."

I've heard a variation of this phrase applied to many different worlds (e.g., exercise, planting a tree), and I'll use it here. "The best time to start cleaning your data was 20 years ago; the second best time is to start today."

The thing about data is it's never completely "clean." You will always have some bad data. But the only way to make sure you don't have a lot of really bad data is to clean it as frequently and effectively as you can.

So where to start? Maybe start with your board list. Or some subset of your members (e.g., everyone with a last name starting with A). Or everyone who attended your last meeting.

Pick a set of data, clean it up, and them move to the next set of data. But whatever you do, start today.

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