Data Hygiene: Is the Data In Your Internal CRM Healthy?

Data hygiene is a phrase many people aren’t familiar with, or in most cases, have heard of it but don’t know what it means.

So what is data hygiene?

When discussing data hygiene, you’ll want to look primarily at your internal marketing CRM (customer relationship management). At the most superficial level, this means reviewing your data from your contacts, such as customers, subscribers, and leads, from click counts and open rates to campaign conversions.


Data hygiene is the best way to prevent any loss of information, whether internal theft, tampering by third parties, or some more obscure but equally damaging type of corruption.

What are the indicators of healthy data?

Data hygiene is often divided into three categories: data validity, data integrity, and data provenance. Within each of these areas, there are several indicators that you can follow to ensure that you are using the data in your database in the most efficient way possible.


Indicators of healthy data are:


Data Integrity

Data integrity essentially means that the data within your database is correct, updated within the accurate timeframes, and remains unmodified unless necessary.

Data Validation

The process of checking the data you’re storing is correct, up-to-date, and relevant; for example, updating a candidate’s address and contact details.


Data validity requires your data to be consistent, coherent and provided in a format understandable by your systems. For example, if you entered ‘25000’ as a candidate’s salary, the CRM automatically returns the value in the correct format (£25,000).

Data Provenance

Data provenance involves tracing the data journey through your systems from when a user entered it into the database, the channel it was sourced from, and by whom.


The more specific your tracking, the more likely you find any relevant discrepancies. In some cases, it is possible to trace specific pieces of information from point to point through your data.

Why are data quality and healthy data important in recruitment?

When evaluating the quality of your candidates, the most valuable thing you have to start with is their CV.


So, when scanning the CV of potential applicants, what do you look for? Do you have candidates whose profiles are either missing vital information or haven’t been updated? Do you have duplicate candidates within the same applicant pool?


Essentially, a recruiter’s role is to source a candidate, qualify them against leads and prospective jobs, and accurately assess the candidate’s suitability to fill the role. With unhealthy data, it’s considerably more complicated to conduct searches efficiently.

What are the leading causes of data problems?

Every organisation and industry is different, but most problems stem from a single source; unhealthy data.

Insufficient Data

If there’s no information, how can you assess the candidate? With insufficient data, it becomes difficult to handle. A candidate profile can contain incomplete or potentially misleading information. On the flip side, the absence of data in some cases can make it challenging to understand the application and candidate performance.


A more structured approach guarantees you only collect the data you need and want while still providing an optimal candidate experience.

Lack of Organisation

Perhaps you have multiple databases that store the same information or your current database stores random datasets that are irrelevant to your recruitment issues.


These issues are commonly a result of poor workflows and inadequate documentation, all of which can be solved by producing training materials and correctly onboarding team members.

What are the main ways in which you can tackle this?

Suppose you use tools like AI and machine learning for boolean searches or to build candidate profiles. In that case, you must train recruiters to leverage tech correctly if you hope to drive maximum tech adoption and ensure you get the most out of your databases.


For example, in order to maximise SourceBreaker’s impact, we have a dedicated customer success team who work to inform, update, and support you on your digital growth journey.


Offering strategic initiatives to drive adoption, onboard agents, track success, and maximise platform impact, SourceBreaker provides customers with ongoing training sessions, workshops, and a monthly management check-in to ensure the insights we’re providing you are healthy but maximising success.