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Improving Data Warehouse and Business Information Quality: Methods for Reducing Costs and Increasing Profits by Larry P. English

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Introduction

“The best effect of any book is that it excites the reader to self activity.”

–THOMAS CARLYLE

The state of information quality today is worse than it was five years ago, and it is getting worse day by day. In fact, the quality of information in many organizations is enterprise-threatening. Consider some of my recent experiences:

Having just returned from chairing my fourth Data Quality conference, the first in London in November 1998, my renewed excitement about information quality improvement as a trend was brought back to reality. The next week I keynoted conferences in Phoenix, Arizona, and Orlando, Florida. When I checked into the Sheraton Mesa Hotel in Phoenix, the registration clerk asked if I was checking in. I replied, “Yes, my name is English.” She entered that into the computer, and asked if my first name was Ron. “No,” I replied, “it is Larry.” “I'm sorry, but we have no reservation for a Larry English,” was her reply. “But that is okay, we have rooms.” My confirmation number validated that the reservation was indeed for me, but under the name “Ron.” The clerk replied, “that's no big deal, we can change it.” “It is a big deal,” I contended. “No it isn't,” she insisted, probably thinking about the ease of making the change in the database, but not about the customer service aspect of the event. Seeing the history of the record, she asked if the last time I had stayed there was the 22nd of last month. No, I had not. When she gave me the printed copy of the ...

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