Data makes it possible to optimize cultivation, harvest, and transport and storage conditions. A 2019 study by Deloitte shows that at least a quarter of retailers are experiencing a serious digital transformation, mainly due to the increasing role of data. The current situation will only add to this percentage. However, it also appears that only a small group of people in organizations have access to data-driven retail insights and that there is insufficient talent to analyze the data. In order to be able to make decisions based on data at any level, these must be made transparent and understandable. This way, data can lead the way to better business results.
All employees must be able to use data
Research company Gartner confirms that data and its analysis are top priorities for the retail industry. Gartner agrees that the benefits of data-driven retail should not remain within that small group of people, all employees should be able to use data to their advantage, from management to location managers to drivers responsible for transport. By giving them access to data and insights, they can all make decisions that contribute to the performance of the organization.
That does not mean that the entire organization needs to be trained as a data scientist. Baptiste Jourdan, co-founder of Toucan Toco: “Data storytelling visualizes data and makes it understandable. By visualizing the most important information, everyone in the company can see at a glance what the performance is and make adjustments based on data. This means that insights from data are not only reserved for management, but everyone can benefit from this in daily decision-making.”
Less food waste thanks to data storytelling
Jourdan gives an example from the food industry. “Sodexo wanted to reduce food waste and realized that it was necessary to integrate data into decision-making: employees responsible for stock management should be aware of the impact of their activities on the profit. Sodexo decided to make data available to the canteen managers, so we visualized their data in an accessible dashboard.”
Sodexo's data visualization app is used as a communication tool to share the predictions made based on data with canteen managers.
With insights from the app, the canteen managers can order the right amount of food based on data. The new approach has led to cost savings and has made a significant contribution to reducing food waste.
Jourdan sees that data storytelling can also be applied to other areas in the fresh produce sector and mentions three concrete opportunities.
Everyone can make profitable decisions
Data isn't just for defining high-level strategies. Data can also influence the smaller decisions that retailers make every day. It is precisely those decisions that affect store presentations, for example. Data storytelling makes it possible for everyone to make profitable decisions faster, resulting in an improvement in-store performance.
Jourdan explains: “In a storytelling dashboard, data is collected over long periods (weeks or even months) to view department performance. The manager can then select below or above average scoring scenarios to find out which variables have made the difference. This gives them the tools to implement a data-driven insight in a department.”
Data storytelling helps discover opportunities
Discovering new opportunities is valuable for every company, but often complex. With data storytelling, information from a variety of sources - from purchase history to store surveys to feedback from email automation campaigns - can be combined to easily uncover new opportunities.
Copy success from other outlets
Data-driven retail makes it possible to achieve the same level of performance and profitability in multiple outlets by learning from best practices. Therefore, it must be clear what the success factors are.
Jourdan gives an example: “Data storytelling combines complex information about store performance into a readable snapshot where immediate action can be taken. For example, data may show that store A is not lacking traffic, but that traffic must be converted into turnover. ”
Jourdan advises companies to add the way in which data is used in the organization to the strategic agenda: “No company can ignore data anymore, but it is not easy to get the right insights from a mountain of data. Data storytelling makes data accessible to every level in the organization. With that, data storytelling bridges the big gap between data scientists and the rest of the organization, so that everyone can make data-based decisions. This is also a huge opportunity for the fresh produce sector. ”