What is Data Mapping?
By Matt Brennan
Data mapping performs an essential function in organizations as they continue to amass increasingly large amounts of information. This increased data collection can be used for a myriad of reasons from more informed marketing decisions to better product development practices.
But keeping track of that data can be a cumbersome process without some organizational standards in place. That’s where data mapping comes into play. At some point collected data may need to be moved between systems, or stored using a different program. A data map is the tool that is used in these events to make sure that data arrives in its destination accurately.
What Data Mapping Means for Your Organization
Simply put, data mapping is the process of matching fields from one database application to the next. It’s a fundamental step in safe data migration and integration. Data mapping is a common business practice, but as the amount of data collected by businesses grows, it becomes increasingly important and complex.
Data Management Begins with Mapping
Without proper data mapping, data has the ability to be corrupted. It’s possible under some circumstances that data will end up in an unusable format or become corrupted. Data mapping allows you to make the most out of your information long after any migrations. It is what ensures that your data will wind up in a usable format in its new source, so that the old source can be properly retired.
What’s Involved in Data Mapping?
The first step to data mapping is establishing what data needs to be moved, and where it needs to go. This includes noting the tables, fields, the formats of the data, and the frequency it needs to be moved.
At this point it’s important to match current fields with new destinations to ensure that it lands in a legible and useful format. You can begin the process with a small sample size to ensure that the transfer works in the ways that you expected. From there the full transfer can be deployed, maintained and updated.
The Need for Software that Can Handle Complexity
We’re largely past the days where complex data migrations, integrations, or transfers can be operated with mapping processes drawn out on paper. More data and more complex data processes render software a necessary tool to assist.
It’s important to find talented data analysts and flexible software programs that can ensure that your company’s objectives are well represented. You need the infrastructure in place to be able to handle large-scale data management in an increasingly competitive business management.
A Data Management Safety Net
Data mapping can save your organization massive headaches in the data management process. But should you lose any sensitive information in the process, a data recovery specialist can help you recover and restore what was lost. If you need help with data recovery, contact us today!