Data prep is the process of cleaning, structuring and enriching raw data into a desired output for analysis. Data prep is as important to data analysis as a pre-flight checklist is to a pilot. With so many moving parts, if a plane isn’t in perfect condition, there’s a potential for even a tiny flaw to cause catastrophic failure.

In the case of data prep, the failure could result in anything from an embarrassing meeting with your client to a million-dollar mistake, but these errors are easy to avoid if you approach them with discipline and focus. The right data wrangling tools can ensure a smooth landing for everyone. Trifacta is a new approach to data preparation. Below, we’ve included some of the core functionalities needed in a modern tool for successful data preparation.