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Terralink's address database cleansing service helps Horizons Regional Council reach the right people at the right time no matter where they live.
Providing environmental information and collecting rates from property owners in the Horizons area involves mailing over 100,000 homes. When around 200 addresses change every week, ensuring data accuracy is a major challenge.
Horizons Regional Council covers Manawatu and Wanganui, and includes the Ruapehu district in the North, and Horowhenua and Tararua in the South.
Horizons Information Analyst Edward Correro says mail was being returned and mailings were taking longer to complete because of incorrect address information.
Mr Correro says Horizons was also keen to qualify for New Zealand Post's bulk mail discount. From 1 July 2008, to qualify for bulk mailout discounts businesses required a Statement Of Accuracy (SOA) and each mail piece has to comply with the new Address Layout Standard (ALS).
"Reducing the volume of mail that is returned and re-sent, and qualifying for the bulk mail discount, will help cut costs for our ratepayers," says Mr. Correro.
"We considered cleaning up the database ourselves by buying or building a software package, or checking it manually, but it was very labour-intensive and costly. Terralink cleaned up the database to New Zealand Post's standards and allowed us to get on with our job of servicing the region," Mr Correro says.
Mr Correro says Terralink's New Zealand MasterMapTM land information database was essential for tracking down rural addresses and property information.
"Our region includes lots of rural properties that don't always have a street number, making them difficult to contact. With the MasterMapTM data, Terralink pinpointed the co-ordinates of rural properties and matched them to an address. It was a huge help in making sure we are contacting the right people."
Mr Correro says that Terralink's data cleansing has put Horizons on the right track.
"The process helped us identify where we were going wrong and where the incorrect information in the database was."
"To qualify for the bulk mailing discount we need to be certified once a year. But the next time we clean it up there'll be less work involved. For us that means savings in time, labour and cost." Mr Correro says.