Address Validator Tool

*Important* As of the December 2018 Patch, the Address Validator Tool has been updated for the latest MelissaData API. Until a full tool rewrite is possible, we have also updated the tool to ignore any Individual NCOA requests. While this means you might miss out on a handful of address updates, it will ensure that Households are not erroneously split. Household and Business NCOA requests will continue to update your MP data as a result of running the tool. We will be better able to address the nuances of Individual NCOA requests and how they are handled in the new MelissaData API in a future rewrite of the tool.

Basics

  • A Melissa Data account is required to use the Address Validator Tool.
  • The Address Validator Tool works with your Melissa Data account to update the address records in Ministry Platform with CASS certification and NCOA verification. This process ensures the addresses are accurate and formatted correctly:
    • CASS - Coding Accuracy Support System - certifies that an approved system is used to check addresses against the US Postal Service's database.
    • NCOA - National Change of Address - is a database the US Postal Service maintains of old and new addresses for individuals who file a Change of Address (COA) upon moving. The NCOA verification service checks to see if any of the submitted addresses are old addresses and, if so, provides the new address. 
  • The Address Validator Tool updates the following fields: Address_Line_1, Address_Line_2, City, State, Postal_Code, Latitude, Longitude, Time_Zone, Area_Code, Bar_Code, Carrier_Route, Delivery_Point_Check_Digit, County:
    • It is not currently possible for the Address Validator Tool to update Census Tract, County FIPS and Census Block. There are services through Melissa Data and other Excel add-ins that could provide this functionality.
  • The US Postal Service previously required a submission of at least 100 addresses at one time. However, as of December 2018, the tool can be run with any number or records.
  • The Address Validator Tool can be run as often as they like, but must be initiated. It is not currently possible for the Address Validator Tool to be automated.
  • Addresses must be attached to a Household to be validated in the current version of the tool.

Initial Setup

A SPoC must complete one-time initial setup in order to use the Address Validator Tool.

  1. Setup an account with Melissa Data by contacting Michelle Oliver at michelle@melissadata.com or 800-635-4772 ext 1113.
  2. Go to Administration > Configuration Settings and update the following Configuration Settings. When doing so, double-check that you have no trailing spaces in the Values of each Configuration Setting, as erroneous spaces can cause errors when using the tool.
    • CORETOOLS,MelissaDataCustomerId.
    • CORETOOLS,UseMelissaSmartMoverService - Set to true to include NCOA updates when using the tool. Set to false if you only want the tool to make updates based on CASS.
  3. Use the Core Tools Management Tool for the Configuration Settings to take effect immediately.
  4. It's recommended that you create views using the Advanced Search functionality on the Addresses page (this page is found in Lookup Values > Addresses). Views such as "All Unvalidated Addresses" and "All Addresses" can be very helpful for your validation process (remember to filter-out records set to Do Not Validate=TRUE as needed).
  5. Grant user access to the tool. See Configuring Core Tools

Choosing Addresses to Validate

As indicated above, utilizing views on the Addresses page is an excellent way to quickly capture records that need validation.

You can also run the Address Validator Tool on a specific selection of records. To do so:

  1. Make a selection on the Contacts page (or, if you made your selection elsewhere, move your selection to the Contacts page using the Transfer Selection Tool).
  2. Once the selection is on the Contacts page, click Xfer.
  3. In the Transfer Selection pop-up window, expand the Households folder and choose Addresses. Your specific selection will then transfer to the Addresses page for you to complete the validation process.

Validating Addresses

  1. Go to Lookup Values > Addresses.
  2. Choose a selection or view of Addresses.
  3. Click Tools > Address Validator.
  4. A total number of records to validate is provided. Note that the number of records the tool returns may be higher than the number of Addresses you selected. This is because the tool submits a request for each person associated with a Household for each Address, which is a requirement of NCOA (e.g., if a Household has four people associated with the same Address, the Address Validator Tool submits four validation requests).
  5. Click Validate:
    • The following fields are updated: Address_Line_1, Address_Line_2, City, State, Postal_Code, Latitude, Longitude, Time_Zone, Area_Code, Bar_Code, Carrier_Route, Delivery_Point_Check_Digit, County.
    • The validation attempt and any changes are logged in the Audit Log of the Address record.
 

Last Modified: 7/16/2019

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