Data Cleansing

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Garbage in, garbage out. It’s a saying we all know. In HR, where there are multiple systems that need to come together for meaningful reporting and analytics, there are many links in the chain where data integrity can falter. When working with your HR and talent data, your insights and analysis are only as good, and as actionable, as the data you are using. If the data you are using is dirty, messy, incorrect, or just plain missing, your reports and your insights are obviously going to be less than useful.

It’s important to have clean data and to feel confident that you can keep the data clean on an ongoing basis. Clean data is a foundational piece for quality decision making.

What is Data Cleansing?

Data cleansing, also called data scrubbing, is the process of identifying, removing or fixing inaccuracies in your data sets. This could be anything from missing, incorrect, redundant, improperly coded, or duplicate records. In HR and Talent Management, the bringing together of multiple data sources means there are many opportunities for data to be duplicated, mislabelled or even missing. Given this coming together of multiple data sources, it's common for HR to have messy data. Add to this the need to integrate historical data that often comes from legacy systems, and HR data integrity can be a real challenge.

Common Data Cleansing Activities

Deduplication - It’s not uncommon for duplicate data to exist when sources are combined. This can happen when datasets merge from different systems or departments. It can happen when you cut over from an old system to a new one.

Structural Errors - Inconsistencies in the data can occur when naming conventions don’t match up and when there are typos. These types of errors need to be corrected in order for the data to be useful.

Missing Data - There are times when a data point is just not there. It’s important to know what’s missing and to make decisions on how to deal with it. Do you input missing values based on other assumptions for that record? Do you drop the entire record from the data set? Are there other options to deal with the missing data?

Reviewing Outliers - It’s important to have a way to identify outliers in the data and make decisions about what to do with them. Is the outlier the result of incorrect data entry or valid? Having the ability to find these outliers and investigate them will help in the performance of your data.

Data Cleansing at Key Points in Time

Data cleansing activities are absolutely essential whenever multiple systems come together. The coming together of different data sources requires many sets of logic and rules to make the data standardized and unified. Data audits and data cleansing are also important with system switchovers (e.g. from ADP to Ultipro or excel to Workday). It’s important to get the logic right when you are using a blend of the two systems and when the cut-over to the new system occurs. There is a lot of behind the scenes work to ensure the old and the new data are unified and standardized.

Regular and Consistent Data Auditing Can Be an HR Life Saver

There are lots of problems that can arise when data integrity is an issue. Before customers partner with PeopleInsight we hear comments about a lack of confidence in the data. Sometimes individuals know their data is a mess. Other times they talk about a niggling concern - either in the back of their mind or keeping them up at night - that the data isn’t right or can’t be trusted 100%. Both want to feel good about their data. We’ve also heard how HR and Talent initiatives have been unexpectedly delayed or derailed due to the discovery of missing or incorrect data. This results in time and resources being co-opted by data cleansing activities. And there are the stories of executive presentations being hijacked by questions and discussions around HR data quality, rather than focusing on the results. This leaves HR scrambling for time and resources to put towards data cleansing activities. These ad-hoc efforts to fix the data can offer a short term solution, but implementing regular and consistent data cleansing processes and practices is the way to go. This will lead to heightened confidence in the metrics, analytics and reports, and better decision making. It will also free up time to spend on more important activities.

Accelerated Outcomes & Customer Delight

Here’s what some of our customers say about our Continuous Auditing process:

“A real plus for us is that PeopleInsight is able to scrub the data. PeopleInsight sends the data back to us and lets us know where there are problems - problems we didn’t even know we had.This is extremely valuable. We can then decide whether we make the corrections or get them to write a rule. It’s important for us to have another set of eyes on our data and identify issues. I didn’t know how important and valuable this would be.”

“You need to have clean data - this underlies everything. PeopleInsight provides us the warehouse capability for integrating the data that is important and then there is the layer of cleansing and scrubbing the data. The “continuous auditing” for issues in our data is equally as important for reporting and for business impact.”

PeopleInsight makes it easy

PeopleInsight makes HR reporting simple. Feed us your raw data from your disparate HR systems and within 5 days, you’ll have the analytics and dashboards you need to make data-driven decisions. The best part of it is that PeopleInsight is continuously updated with data feeds from your transactional HR systems and there’s never a need for an Administrator on your side.


Send us your raw data

  • Start by sending us your raw, native format HR data from your current and historical HR systems and we’ll connect them together to build dashboards that fit your needs.
  • No need to transform your data into a special, vendor-defined format, simply just upload your raw data and we’ll do the heavy lifting.

We connect your data together & customize automated data feeds based on your exact needs

  • Our platform fixes any inaccuracies and inconsistencies when connecting data from different HR systems. Your data is processed, tested, and validated to ensure your unified data warehouse is accurate.

We get you up and running within 5 days

  • Within 5 days, you are presented with the initial suite of analytics and dashboards that you’ve subscribed to. We are built around rapid, predictable and high quality deployment cycles. From this point, we iterate with you for a few more weeks until you have exactly what you need and have trust and confidence that your reporting is accurate.

You have access to your own team of HR data and people analytics experts

  • With PeopleInsight, you’ll have access to our team of experts running and operating the PeopleInsight platform. We are able to create custom reports specific to your organization and become your extended people analytics team - ready to deploy new data feeds, build new dashboards, or handle urgent ad-hoc queries.

In PeopleInsight, you deploy a SOC2 & GDPR compliant secure platform

  • Securely managing who has access to your confidential employee and salary data is always a major conundrum. How can you have an in-house solution supported by internal IT and not expose critical and confidential data to those internal administrators? How do you ensure row-level, role-specific data authorizations across your users? How do you best protect yourself against a data-breach? The answer that many have turned to is to work with a highly accredited, trusted 3rd party people analytics platform whose business was built with Privacy-by-Design at its very core.
  • The best proof-point of this is that PeopleInsight customers include some of the most prominent big data companies, consumer and healthcare analytics platforms and bona-fide market creators in the security and authentication space.

You get flexible, powerful and customizable reporting

  • Every metric and dashboard is customized to you and your company so that you’ll get the metrics and dashboards that matter to you. We’ll take on the analytics and reporting so that you and your HR team can focus on building strategy and creating action with your workforce data.
  • Whether you need day-to-day reporting or have a major change, we work with you to get these analytics ready for you. The sky’s the limit with your analytics and we work with you to get the analytics that fit for your company.

Flip your focus from preparing data and dashboards to using your data

  • PeopleInsight processes, discovers and visualizes data faster than in-house solutions saving your company time and resources so you can focus on analyzing the data and creating action rather than spending time on building dashboards.

  • See below for some of our UKG customer testimonials 

See PeopleInsight in Action with our Interactive Free Trial

Check out our free 7 day trial of our HR analytics platform. Qualified businesses can sign up for the PeopleInsight Trial Account and experience the people analytics platform built to integrate all your disparate HR and talent data.

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