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Data Profiling - A Quick Primer on the What and the Why of Data Integration

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Published Date: 
Apr 12, 2011
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Abstract

Databases in most companies have evolved in an ad-hoc manner, which has resulted in  information  silos. Companies, therefore, do not have  a unified view of their customers, resulting in missed business opportunities or increased  cost of operations.  Data integration addresses those issues, but poses data verification challenges, since the source data are in diverse databases.  Most data  integration and  migration projects overshoot their time and cost estimates because of the effort expended to understand the source data. Data profiling  automates the identification of problematic source data, inconsistencies, redundancies, and inaccuracies.  Data profiling also provides a factual foundation, based  on which  data can be  cleansed and then consolidated  before integration.
 
Excerpts from the Paper
A company’s database  contains information that touches most  aspects of its  business activity market data, customer information, accounting information, production details, sales records, billing details,  collection details, personnel records, salary records, and  so on. This data is utilized by the company for various business decisions, and it is therefore imperative that the  data  in the database  be consistent, accurate and reliable. Since the costs of poor data quality are high, increasingly  companies are “profiling data” to  check its quality and suitability for business. Data profiling uses “analytical techniques to discover the true content, structure, and quality of data.”

 

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