Leading provider of data quality and email marketing solutions, Validity has released the findings of its new 2022 State of CRM Data Health Report, which shows a heightened tension between confidence in data quality and the reality of its bottom-line impact.

Maintaining high quality data health remains a challenge for many businesses, who reported poor quality CRM data resulted in significant customer losses, sales deficits, and high employee turnover.

Yet, despite acknowledging these issues, three-quarters (76%) of respondents still characterised their CRM data quality as either ‘good’ or ‘very good’ at the onset of the survey, only to later reveal that poor CRM data quality is costing their company new sales and 75% stating inadequate outreach driven by poor data lost their company customers.

Almost eight in 10 (79%) respondents agreed that data decay has accelerated at an unprecedented rate as a result of the pandemic. A major concern with data decay is a lack of acknowledgement and remediation-focused support from company leadership, who are currently not prioritising data quality initiatives per the report.

Poor data integrity impacts all levels of an organisation and can escalate into overarching unethical data practices that hurt brand reputation and customer trust. In fact, 75% of respondents admit employees fabricate data to tell the story they want decision makers to hear. Meanwhile, 82% say they are asked to find data to support a specific story, rather than provide accurate data.

Low-quality data also has the potential to impact co-worker relationships. More than two-thirds (67%) of respondents said poor data quality creates tension between the CRM maintenance team and marketing department, jeopardising employee satisfaction. These trends also extend to current CRM employees, who have less patience for low-quality data and usability roadblocks that make it difficult to do their jobs. 

Everything an organisation does starts with, and relies on, accurate CRM data – from marketing campaigns to sales development activity to providing an excellent customer experience and beyond, according to Validity senior vice president of marketing, Kate Adams said.

“While the findings of this report may initially be bleak, there is hope. As the initial shockwaves of the pandemic subside, many organisations are realigning their budgets and planning to invest in the betterment of their data health and quality. The upward trends of companies dedicating a portion of their budget to hire a full-time CRM data quality employee, and taking data quality more seriously in light of COVID-19 related data decay are highly encouraging.”