I have a data extension that is being updated with a SQL query.

The data extension is already populated with data and I would like to change the field name for one of the fields.

I have already tested changing field names for columns with existing data and the values seem to be unaffected.

However, I am yet to test changing field names in DEs that are being referenced in a SQL query within an active automation.

If I change the field name and also update the corresponding SQL query that is referencing the old field name with the updated field name, are there any negative consequences to consider?

Thank you in advance!

1 Answer 1


From my experience, if you change a field name in the DE and modify the SQL query from an active automation, you will need to pause the automation and reselect the SQL query activity to make it reflect to the change.

  • Sorry if I made it sound like I wouldn't pause/reactivate the automation after making changes to the SQL activity, I will most certainly do that. I'm generally more concerned with any negative impact on the data if I do make changes to the field name in the DE and SQL activity. Especially if data already exists in the column.
    – Aib Syed
    Dec 15, 2022 at 3:31
  • @Dr.Tenma It doesn't take effect on the data as long as you do the same steps above. If I were you, I would notice to reselect the SQL query in the automation to make it reflect the change. I used to experience that the new data wouldn't populate into the new column name due to this "cache" issue
    – Duc Le
    Dec 15, 2022 at 4:28

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