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Helpful Strategies for Organizing Large Data Sets - Sophia Belnap - Blog

Helpful Strategies for Organizing Large Data Sets

If you work with large amounts of data, you know the task can be daunting. You may struggle with how to keep track of certain items. You may also be wasting time trying to locate embedded information so you can extract it for meaningful use. Here are some strategies to help you deal with your large data sets.

Get Appropriate Training

When you start working with a data set, you want to make sure you are fully aware of all system capabilities. You should get training on all aspects of the functionality to ensure you can get the performance from the programs you require. This will help you organize and extract data as needed efficiently.

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Rely on Automation

You should use automated features and programs to sort and collate your data sets where possible. Many programs are available that can achieve outstanding results. One example is for large customer data sets. You can get a lead management system that will sort and filter your customer lists or raw marketing data into groups for potential sales calls on additional product lines that make sense for the buyer.

Create a Visual

Sometimes it is helpful to see what your data organization looks like. You can sketch out a flow chart or organized structure by hand. You can also use features within your data software to create charts and graphs to see trends and how the data is sorted. Creating a picture of the information will help you identify outliers in the figures.

Track Changes

Your data control software should have a feature that allows you to view the changes made to the set with details on who made what alterations. This feature can help you keep track of tasks that have already been completed so that you do not repeat steps. You can also see what version of data you are working with quickly and easily.

Document the Process

A critical component of organizing your data is the process of data management and reporting. Whatever results you are tasked to produce with your data, you should document each step in the process that you need to complete. This will help you keep your tasks organized and give you something to check off before moving to the next step. You can also pick up on a project at any time and know what needs to be done next.

Keep an Original

When you start working with a large data set, you must make a copy of the original file. This step is critical if any of the manipulations you make to sort and extract the data end up removing records. You should store the copy in a secure location automatically backed up at regular intervals. This will maintain the integrity of the essential information you are working with.

Use Computing Efficiently

Large data sets can be draining on your computing resources. Sometimes functions in large groups can take long periods to run. Before running your tasks on the more extensive collection, you should test run on a smaller subset to ensure it produces the expected result. If not, you can adjust your commands and try again. This will save you from waiting it out while the search is run on the massive, only to find out that the command is incorrect and needs to be rerun.

Store the Data Remotely

While working with a large data file, you do not want to download it locally to a particular piece of hardware. Instead, the information should be saved in a secure location that can be accessed remotely. Many of the analysts who work on the data set will need to be able to use it from different locations. 

Working with massive amounts of data can be a challenge. Computers and automation make things possible that were much more difficult without these systems. It would help if you still employed some additional tactics to be efficient.


Publish Date: April 28, 2022 3:57 PM

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