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Analytics

Flashback to 1982: me, eyes wide, thumbing through an encyclopedia-sized retail catalog ahead of the holiday shopping season. If I wanted something, I simply folded the page and returned the book to my mom. When the season was over, the whole catalog—crumpled from chosen items such as lawnmowers, cardigans and bed sheets—went into the garbage. Me today: if I’m buying something, I touch at least five...

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As many insurers know, the web of insurance fraud grows rapidly. Opportunistic and organized fraud can quickly be spun into inflated claims damage, exaggerated injuries, staged accidents and overpriced auto body repairs that can sneak up to take a bite out of balance sheets. Insurance companies can become entangled by investigation inefficiencies, high loss adjustment expenses and incorrect payments, and that’s not even accounting for...

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Forecasting is key to strong financial decision making. Recent improvements to hardware and software, mobile devices and social collaboration tools now allow businesses to collect, store and analyze more data to help them create accurate forecasts. New tools also provide opportunities for better financial forecasting methods, alleviating some of the tedious work and improving financial executives' ability to predict future trends. How can analytics eliminate tedious...

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Much has been written about the impact that digital and mobile commerce have had on brick-and-mortar retailers in recent years, but ironically, physical retail experiences may actually benefit from the ongoing mobile and technical revolution. Enter retail analytics and its best friend, data extraction. One of the biggest challenges for retailers has always been scaling great customer service, specifically how to better personalize in-store experiences. As...

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At the Retail and Consumer Goods Analytics Summit in Chicago, the theme was "Analytics Now." But haven’t consumer goods suppliers and retailers always been data-driven? Certainly they have—but thanks to the eruption of a geyser of valuable external data and the increasing sophistication of analytics capabilities that can be readily delivered to a full range of business users, businesses are finding that they have entered...

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An emergency management information system thrives on information, but it can also drown in data. The last thing a first responder needs at a crucial moment is data overload. Useful information is often available, but it's hard to access at the right time, or responders realize too late that such data hasn't been compiled. Often, effective results come when you combine information from seemingly disparate fields....

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What does it mean to be a change agent in business today? When I spoke to the audience at IBM Vision 2016 in May 2016, the theme was from the title of my book, Kill the Company. Yes, it’s a provocative title—and it’s intended to be. Too many companies today suffer from what I call “the twin evils of complexity and complacency.” I believe that...

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