Quality of Information


Information is a vital resource for success of any organization. Future of an organization lies in using and disseminating information wisely. Good quality information placed in right context in right time tells us about opportunities and problems well in advance.

What is good quality information? Quality is a value that would vary according to the users and uses of the information.

According to Wang and Strong, following are the dimensions or elements of Information Quality:

  • Intrinsic: Accuracy, Objectivity, Believability, Reputation

  • Contextual: Relevancy, Value-Added, Timeliness, Completeness, Amount of information

  • Representational: Interpretability, Format, Coherence, Compatibility

  • Accessibility: Accessibility, Access security

Various authors propose various lists of metrics for assessing quality of information.Let us generate a list of most essential characteristic features for information quality:

  • Reliability - it should be verifiable and dependable.

  • Timely - it must be current and it must reach the users well in time, so that important decisions can be made in time.

  • Relevant - it should be current and valid information and it should reduce uncertainties.

  • Accurate - it should be free of errors and mistakes, true and not deceptive.

  • Sufficient - it should be enough and adequate and sufficient in quantity, so that decisions can be made on the basis of it.

  • Unambiguous - it should be expressed in clear terms. In other words in should be comprehensive.

  • Complete - it should meet all the needs in current context.

  • Unbiased - it should be impartial, free from any bias. In other words it should have integrity.

  • Explicit - it should not need any further explanation.

  • Comparable - it should be of uniform collection, analysis, content, and format.

  • Reproducible - it could be used by documented methods on the same data set to achieve a consistent result.