On a recent shopping trip in the city centre, I passed a fortune teller’s shop and it got me thinking about my next blog post.
Whilst the sceptics amongst you might at this point be wondering where this is going, the believers out there are in fact correct; telling the future is indeed possible.
However, I’m not referring to forecasting next week’s lotto numbers or whether I’ll find love the next time I visit Tesco.
I’m referring to the area of computing termed predictive analytics! Predictive analytics is the term given to the process of using complex analytic tools to predict trends, develop models and estimates of what might occur based on similar events that have occurred.
From a business perspective, organisations are looking at their existing data with a view to making predictions about future conditions.
Over the last number of years, this has led to an increase in the number of requests from our customers asking Olas to include predictive tools within our apps.
Predictive modelling has been available to a small extent in recent years within tools such as Excel. However to make any meaningful model, additional information needs to be added to the model; the challenge here being that it is not always structured business data
One of our customers, a leading beverage company, engaged Olas to develop a tool that would examine their sales plans and sales actuals data against other data sets and metrics including:
- AC Nielsen information
- Weather information (temperature, sunshine & rainfall)
- Weekly Facebook likes & shares
- Twitter followers & impressions
- Monthly LinkedIn followers & updates
- Public holidays
- Major public events (matches, concerts, etc.)
The “Analytic Insights” tool was developed in partnership with the client on a phased basis allowing each factor or layer to be tested before applying additional layers.
The software allows for several additional bespoke elements including:
• weighting of certain layers or removal of layers from the calculation algorithms
• building and saving of scenarios
• custom reports on screen or in PDF and excel formats
• simple addition of new data layers
In our experience, these tools provide our customers with valuable foresight into their business. The simple nature of the software and low cost means that your organisation can look to the future and make business decisions, predict developments, respond to challenges before they happen.
Predictive analytics has proven its worth in organisations around the world. If you would like a free no obligation chat on this, please call us on 01-2790020.
Regardless, maybe leave the crystal ball option alone!