In recent years, data hygiene is growing in importance, particularly in healthcare. Having accurate patient data literally can mean the difference between life and death. While it’s not as extreme on the hospital foundation side, having clean data is a key component in fundraising. We understand how cumbersome data hygiene is to maintain but it can mean the difference with increased revenue for the year or not.

Here are three reasons as to why data hygiene needs to be top of mind for all foundations.

1. Clean data improves the efficiency of donor acquisition activities

In order to ensure that outreach efforts are effective and efficient, clean data needs to be a top priority. Staff who are reaching out to patients for donations need to have current, clean and accurate data to make sure that their efforts aren’t wasted. For example, having the ability to screen your prospects for deceased consumers is important for hospital foundations due to the nature of services provided by the hospital. With your existing donors, you should periodically screen for deceased donors via an automated process.  

2. Accurate data improves productivity and speed to donation

Even though your staff may have a full work queue to go through on a daily basis, if it’s filled with inaccurate and missing data, it’s useless and not a productive use of time. When trying to measure your staff’s effectiveness be sure that you have presented them with prospects where the information is present for them to conduct their appropriate outreach. By managing your work queue to exclude accounts with missing information, you are helping to optimize your staff’s productivity. Use solutions to help append missing demographics when applicable. If you are trying to append patient data, it’s important to understand the HIPAA implications and use caution. You should always be looking for ways to enhance your existing donor lists.

3. Contacting the Right-Party is key to job satisfaction

What most screening tools for hospitals foundations fail to deliver is a reliable to way assess the likelihood that you will be successful in reaching the prospect. This is called “right-party contact” and is critical to any outreach effort. This effort is typically provided via predictive modeling and the inclusion of external data to confirm demographics. The idea is to rank order prospects so that your staff is working reachable prospects and, thus, maximizing their productivity. When you enable your business process with “right-party contact” indicators, you will be improving the number of positive touches your staff experiences with their prospects greatly improving their job satisfaction.

When evaluating services or solutions for cleaning your data, look for data experts. Ensure that they abide by high security protocols and are very protective over the data that is transmitted back and forth. This will tell you how they value data hygiene. One mistake can cost your organization considerable fines.