Shining Light on Dark Data: Classification & Storage Tips

by Kandace Miller, Global Marketing Director, Cluen 

Have you entered the world of “Dark Data”? Many organizations today recognize that a good percentage of their data is old and dead. Search firms will dump unanalyzed sums of big data without taking a look at what they already have. Fresh data is dumped on top of old data, and there you have it…data chaos. Having access to lists and importing more data on top of old data is not the solution to refreshing your information. An overwhelming amount of issues arise when it comes to taking unclassified information and adding to it.

Cluen has seen the best and the worst when it comes to data classification and storage.

7 Guidelines to Bring "Dark Data" into the Light:

1. Make sure your firm has a company-wide data policy and clear procedures for the minimum (and ideal) entries each person is responsible for.

2. Make sure your current data is in compliance with local and international laws before bringing any of it “back to life”. 

3. Execute a marketing email blast to uncover which email addresses are inactive, and re-kindle stale relationships. 

4. Develop guidelines for how to combine old and new information. Be sure to reconcile the duplicative data you already have, as you collect new information. The goal should be to have all staff able to rely on your recruitment system.

5. Flag records that haven’t been accessed in a while. Choose what old data is ready to be retired. Define what needs to be purged/stored (storage is cheap) and what should be flagged as inactive in your database.  Many of our clients flag records to ensure they are kept out of new search results and queries. 

6. Schedule data “check-ups” to help your firm stay on top of data integrity.

7. Consider hiring an intern or contractor to review old data and consolidate and update missing fields.

If you are considering switching recruitment database providers, it is imperative that you develop a plan to clean up your data during your software implementation. Cluen does this as an integral part of our migration process when customers upgrade to Encore. Contact Cluen if you would like to discuss best practices on data classification and storage.


About Cluen

Cluen has provided software to executive search firms globally since 1990. Cluen’s cloud-based solution, EncoreOne, allows you to track relational data and automate your recruitment process. Cluen’s experts consult with search firms around the world on best practices for relationship-driven search and data compliance. Contact us today for more information.