May 6, 2020

Turn the data storm into actionable insights

Data and Analytics

Take a minute to think about your cash management process. Do you use a POS, recyclers, smart safes, self-checkouts, bill counters, scales or coin counters? On a daily basis each of these devices, along with other Internet of Things (IoT) devices, will collect an unimaginable amount of data within the retail space. Experts predict that the amount of data generated will grow to 175 zettabytes in 2025 (one zettabyte equals one trillion gigabytes). In such a data-rich environment, businesses are more aware than ever of the value data can bring to an organization. Leveraging data to make strong business decisions is going to be a necessity to survive in increasingly competitive marketplaces.

Data by the numbers

With transformation top of mind for most businesses, it seems that data is the logical place to start among enterprise-level businesses. A recent survey of analytics and business intelligence professionals examined the latest trends in data and analytics. A few of these may come as no surprise, while others might be more eye-opening.

  • 56% of organizations leveraging analytics are experiencing faster and more effective decision-making, and more than half (51%) are realizing better financial performance.
  • 65% say that they will invest more in their analytics initiatives over the next year.
  • In the U. S., just 44% of front-line employees have analytics access compared to 81% of management and executive teams.

One thing is certain, there is substantial growth and investment being made across businesses to take data and apply it to more informed business decisions.  

Data is driving transformation in retail  

While it is important to understand the growing trend of data in business, there are specific use cases that should be considered within the retail space.

  1. Address business problems with actionable insight. So many of the decisions made by retailers in the past were based on historical experiences or well-meaning assumptions. With the explosion of data, there is an opportunity to take the guesswork out of retail. Take, for example, cash on hand recommendations per retail store. Many of those guidelines are based on historical estimates. Looking at the data, retailers can now leverage predictive analytics to ensure registers, self-checkouts and the store safes have the right cash levels by denomination.
  2. Leverage data to increase customer personalization. The customer experience is one of the most pressing topics for retailers. More and more retailers are moving away from generic customer segmentation to focus on micro-segmentation to enhance the customer experience. This form of segmentation is driven by diving deep into data from internal and external sources to create a holistic view of the customer. This method is effective in increasing the chance of breaking through the noise and securing a sale.
  3. Increase corporate and store-level collaboration. As the research demonstrates, there is disparity in data and analytics available between those in the corporate office and those working the front lines at the local level. Front-line management may feel that a local process works better whereas corporate management may have different insight based on what the data shows. With the surge in data, there’s been an increasing investment made in solutions that provide visibility at both corporate and store levels. This enhances collaboration, making informed decisions based on data available at all levels.

While many retailers realize the value data brings, many get caught up in data storms and take on more than necessary. Others may simply not know what to do with all of the information in their possession. It is reported that nearly 36% of companies don’t use all the data they have available. While data can be intimidating, the value it can bring will drastically transform retail.

Our next blog will dive deeper into the retail customer experience. In the meantime, read how to alleviate cash management headaches.