Today, markets are more competitive than ever. To succeed, you must capitalize on your data, one such tool to add to your armour is data profiling.

What Is Data Profiling?

Data profiling is the monitoring and cleansing data, using a systematic, consistent, repeatable and metrics-based process. It is usually the first step in the process of gaining control over your data. Its aim is to ascertain the condition of the data stored in various locations and forms throughout your company.

data profiling tool will plug into a data source. Then, it will provide an important amount of useful insight into the quality of your data. This knowledge is an essential component in the process of improving the health of your data.

Why Is Data Profiling Important?

Data profiling is incredibly important for various reasons. For companies, the ever-increasing quantities of data they need to properly manage is only one part of the problem. Data quality is the other.

For example, if you don’t correctly format or standardize your data, you could miss sales opportunities. Also, you can make bad business decisions overall.

Related: The Shocking Cost Of Dirty Data In Healthcare

Benefits Of Data Profiling

As mentioned, data profiling will diagnose the quality of your data, one of the many benefits to data profiling. Based on these insights, you will be able to create a plan to increase the health of your data.

For starters one benefit of profiling provides the answer to the most important questions in data management: does the information stored in my systems match its description?

Let’s say you have the answer to this question. Now you can dig deeper and understand the relationships between data stored in different systems. But it goes beyond by helping you check if your data matches the company’s business rules.

SportsMechanics are a data analytics company which partners with sports organisations to enhance and manage performance effectively.  They have lots of data they use for analytics, in fact over 200 Gigabytes spanning over 10 years.  What they needed was a cost-effective solution that would help to automatically flag any data quality issues, as well as identify any duplicate records across single and multiple lists.

analytics case study data profiling

How Does Data Profiling Work?

However complex, you can separate this into two main categories: structure discovery and content discovery.

Structure discovery

You could use structure discovery to validate the consistency of your data. Also, you can use it to check if your data is correctly formatted. One of the most common approach to achieve this goal is pattern matching. For example, you could apply pattern matching on a list of phone numbers, to identify the valid sets out of the entire dataset. Most importantly, you could use structure discovery to gain insight into the validity of the data by using statistical information like minimum, maximum, or average values.

Content discovery

Usually, you perform this step after you finish analyzing the structure of your data. It looks more closely at the individual elements and helps you gain an even more accurate image of the quality of your data. For example, the content discovery could help you find incorrect or ambiguous values that could prove costly if not discovered early.

Related: What Is A 360-Degree Customer View?

How to Start

Data profiling provides the means of analyzing large amounts of data using a systematic, consistent, repeatable and metrics-based process. Given today’s data dynamic nature, you should continuously assess the quality of your data.

However, for many businesses,  there is a problem, many projects are stuck between two options. On the one side, one must consider the time required to build an in-house data profiling tool. On the other side, one must consider the costs.

Behind its friendly user-friendly interface, the Profiling & Statistics module within WinPure Clean & Match provides a powerful data profiling tool that can help your business discover patterns and meaning in your data. It also checks the quality of your data by analyzing formats, types, completeness and value counts. It will automatically provide a colour status depending on whether its a potential high data quality issue or a medium data quality issue. Moreover, WinPure Clean & Match provides a complete sets of data profiling statistics which are specially designed to help cleanse, correct, and prepare your data for data matching.

data profiling example



data profilingUsually, data management projects start with an accounting of all the inconsistencies within your data sets. The potential problems that usually arise from the usage of non-standardized data, like the inability of reaching customers via mail due to incorrectly formatted addresses, are costly.

Fortunately, the Data Profiling and Statistics module within WinPure Clean & Match is designed to help you address and fix these issues early in your data management project.

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Download the 30 days free trial and see for yourself how our easy it is to quickly profile your data from just a few clicks.


Written by Andrei Popescu

Andrei is a detail-oriented writer and enjoys the process of researching and learning new things all data quality.

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