Lightstream address database cleansing fiber optic background image

How Lightstream Cleansed their Address Database with Smarty

At a glance

Challenge

Incorrect and Incomplete Addresses in Database

Solution

US Street Address API Cleansing Service

Results

Cleansed 10-15% of Bad Database Addresses

The Client: Lightstream

Lightstream is a premier telecommunications and technology systems integration partner with a proven track record and strong working relationships with carriers and cloud service providers. As a steadily growing value-added reseller for the telecom industry, Lightstream simplifies installation, billing, usage, and more for businesses.
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Service technician arriving at correct address aided with database cleansing and standardization.

The Challenge: Incorrect and Incomplete Addresses in Database

Lightstream partners with the world’s leading technology and telecommunications companies to address on-premise and cloud convergence complexities. This includes installing and servicing telecommunications equipment at physical locations. Providing excellent customer service is a top priority for Lightstream.

In order to deliver on their customer service promise, it’s essential for Lightstream to have accurate customer address data—including secondary address designations like apartment, floor, or suite numbers. Address inaccuracies were wasting man hours and increasing customer wait time for on-premise service requests.

Lightstream realized that many addresses in their database were incorrect or incomplete and this was only being discovered when a technician was trying to find the physical address. There was no standard process when customer service representatives were entering information into their address database; some addresses were entered individually as free text and some were entered in bulk via spreadsheets from clients.

To improve their quick and responsive service to both customers and partners, Lightstream knew they would need address database cleansing and to standardize the process for address data capture.

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John Loveland
Senior Software Engineer, Lightstream
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There was no standard process when customer service representatives were entering information into their address database.

The Solution: US Street Address API Cleansing Service

Several years ago, Lightstream integrated Smarty’s Address Verification into their customer portal, Lightstream Connect for their database cleansing initiative. Customers place orders, request tech support, and manage their accounts all through this portal.
To get started, the developers cleansed and standardized their existing address database by accessing the Address Verification API through the Smarty .NET SDK. The API also parsed the addresses into their component parts. Additionally, they set up flags in their system: green for addresses that have been cleansed through Smarty and red for addresses that haven’t.
In addition to correcting bad addresses, Smarty Address Verification also standardizes the format of all addresses and parses the data into the correct fields.
They also instituted a new process so that all new addresses going forward would be automatically cleaned and standardized through the Address Verification API. Lightstream is using this integration to validate addresses in the United States, Canada, as well as several overseas locations, including Japan, Thailand, Great Britain, and Belgium.
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The Results: Cleansed 10-15% of Bad Database Addresses

According to John Loveland, Senior Software Developer, the initial API implementation was straightforward and everything has been smooth since then. Lightstream’s developers haven’t had to do any additional adjustments or maintenance, unusual for third party software.

10-15% of the addresses in Lightstream’s database needed to be cleansed. Now that all those addresses are correct and validated, technicians don’t have to waste time tracking down locations based on bad address data. To make it even easier to visit the right location on the first try, the Smarty address verification API provides the correct secondary numbers and designators, such as specific office suites, which many services don’t offer.

And with the API integration, future database cleansing becomes automatic since information added to the address database will be validated and corrected right from the start—allowing Lightstream to more quickly and efficiently service their customers and partners.

In addition, Lightstream uses various metadata points that are also returned with the validated addresses to enhance their service. With every validated address, Smarty can provide up to 45 points of metadata. Two such elements are the latitude and longitude data points, which Lightstream uses to display locations on a map in the Lightstream Connect dashboard, providing a smooth user experience.

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The API implementation was straightforward and everything has been smooth since then.
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John LovelandSenior Software Engineer, Lightstream
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