Predictive Analytics or Active Data Warehousing

Yesterday in Canada there was an announcement in the news that SAS has implemented software designed to improve revenue optimization, planning and forecasting over at Hudsons Bay Company (HBC).

This is great news for HBC and hopefully it will help them do what they have been doing inuitively in a more scientific manner.  An article over at introduces the burning issue of is this enough to stave off Wal-mart?

First let’s start with…  Hey let them enjoy for a minute that they have made this step.  Good for them.
Second, OK let’s look at the Wal-mart effect issue.  Wal-mart is an active data warehousing company that leverages real-time analytics and integrates that back into their processes.  Most retailers in the globe are no where near this level of sophistication or technical maturity.  They will need to move closer to this to truely compete, but in the meantime they do have some brand to help them (over the short term).

So why did I decide to post this.  I guess it is of great interest to me to see what Canadian retailers are doing as we do work at a Canadian retailer in their Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing area.  So this should have a ripple effect as the awareness of what the landscape is doing, helps bring credibility and acceptance of moving forward.  But the most important thing is that retailers capture so much information, but often are hampered from being able to leverage that information to better run their business.  So good for you HBC.  But tomorrow it will be time to move closer to real-time or active datawarehousing where assortment planning is done on the fly so that we can buy Olympic merchandise and not have to come back to the store in an hour as things get figured out.

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