The beauty of analytics is that it allows analysts and decision makers to take new approaches to problem solving. This includes exploring new ways of examining data as well as new types of data sets that can be applied to making better business decisions.
A prime example of this is the way that some companies are beginning to look differently at supporting growth strategies. Historically, most companies have taken product-centric approaches to business. That is, if we can produce “X” product units this quarter, we will hit our revenue and profit targets.
More recently, forward-thinking companies are taking more customer-centric approaches to growth whereby management is placing greater focus on optimizing the customer experience since ultimately “customers are the true source” of a company’s revenues. This is an important distinction for data scientists who are trying to help corporate decision makers identify business opportunities, minimize operational disruptions and drive improved business performance.
Collaboration with peers and organizational leaders is another way for data analysts to look at analytics in new ways. Joel Rubinson, the former chief research officer of the Advertising Research Foundation, and Judah Phillips, a former analytics director for Monster and Reed Elsevier, have created the Analytics Research Organization (ARO) in an effort to help data scientists share ideas and approach analytics from new angles.
For its part, ARO plans to focus on applying analytics and research to business challenges such as increasing revenue and profit, and creating value. According to an article on the group by Research-live.com, Rubinson and Phillips plan to use crowdsourcing to determine ARO’s priorities and activities.
Meanwhile, the continuous eruption of big data from a variety of structured and unstructured data sources, including social channels, sensors, contact centers, web site activity, etc., is also helping data scientists raise new questions regarding their approaches to analytics as well as discover new market opportunities.
Investors.com recently posted an article highlighting the ways analysts and others can use a combination of big data, social channels, and collaboration to unearth new approaches to problem solving. Or, in some cases, borrow ideas from other industries.
For example, the article points to a major toilet paper manufacturer that was trying to figure out how best to package its rolls. An expert in the beverage industry suggested a design that’s similar to fridge-pack soda boxes, where drinks drop and then roll to the entrance of the box for easy access.
Of course, there have been other examples of companies borrowing ideas from other industries to solve product, process, and other problems. Still, it underscores how data scientists can shake up their traditional approaches to problem solving and use analytics to embrace other ideas, whether they’re old or new.
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