Clients Who 'Get IT':
Measuring your success, or Analytics for fun and profit.
It’s a wonderful validation to have clients ‘get it,’ and realize the enormous benefits beyond the initial cost savings that come from careful analysis of their business operations.
A recent conference call with our client Dorel, the Canadian consumer products giant, about our progress with TOTALquote for air freight, provides a good example. In their minds, the biggest advantage of our tool is not getting lower rates, per se. It is having the ability to measure their performance against their internal goals, between their various business units and over time.
Using the system allowed them to analyze metrics they hadn't even considered, such as tracking the winning carrier bid as a percentage of the other bids, by carrier, to see which companies are consistently "out of line" and why. Are their quotes skewed by origin-destination pairs, weight of shipment, Dorel division serviced? Are divisions that consistently award most business to fewer carriers receiving higher prices on average? Or is it possible that their prices are better because they create "loyalty" with a smaller core of carriers.
The point of these and other examples is that the analytics process lays bare the answers, which otherwise couldn’t be measured. Using the system helps to identify best practices and drive corporate behavior in that direction.
We have been preaching the gospel of business intelligence for years, saying, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.” With the software tools we have developed, we’ve just gotten a lot better at the measuring part.
Noted philanthropist Bill Gates wrote an op-ed piece for the Wall Street Journal that highlights the nearly universal applicability of this discipline. His title: “My Plan to Fix the World’s Problems – Measure Them.” In the article, he wrote, "You can achieve incredible progress if you set a clear goal and find measures that will drive progress toward that goal."
Mr. Gates, a retired businessman, had some influence in creating the tech revolution that makes modern analytics possible. At TOTALogistix, we are “pushing the peanut forward” in the logistics space. What will be the measure that drives your success to new heights?