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August 28, 2017
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How Data Fuels the Breakneck Speed of Innovation

The world is moving faster than ever before, and companies are finding themselves scrambling to keep up. Our society has become centered on convenience and everything happening in real time. Data insights need to happen in real time as well so that companies can maximize their ability to better serve their customers.

Last week I wrote about the new retail stores that Amazon is in the process of bringing to market. These new stores will rely on sensors and machine learning to track the items customers pick up and put back. Then when the customer is finished shopping, they’re automatically charged through the app rather than having to stand in line and checkout with a cashier.

Walmart is jumping in on this new trend too, and others are sure to follow. Companies continue to make significant investments in artificial intelligence and machine learning, looking to change out-of-date systems that have been in place for decades. It’s clear the world is moving towards a retail revolution, so what does this mean for cashiers? Some jobs are at risk for automation.

Mostly this trend is driven through efficiency and cost savings, but the increase in online sales has also been a big factor pushing towards change. This means there will soon be less of a need for certain retail jobs.

While some jobs will become automated, reports say that the decrease in cashier jobs will lead to more people employed in other areas, such as distribution centers and fulfillment hubs. Another possibility is moving those people to other areas of the store where they still interact with customers, such as being greeters or handing out samples.

Machines are quickly getting to the point where they can take care of jobs that require less skill, involving repetition. While this will change the job landscape, it allows humans to focus on higher level vocations. This creates better jobs and leads to more productivity.

Real Time Data Insights Are a Game Changer

Our society has become primly focused on convenience whenever possible. Immediate gratification is now expected for everything. It has become the new normal, where any request can happen at the touch of a button.

This new normal, with everything happening at a more rapid pace, also extends to data. Traditional storage methods no longer cut it. Data insights need to happen in real time, so that companies can make necessary adjustments immediately. In doing so, they’re able to save money and grow their business through better service of their customers. Without this ability, companies miss out on essential opportunities, and potentially miss out on chances to improve.

Hortonworks helps customers achieve superior results through Hortonworks Connected Data Platforms, specifically Hortonworks Data Flow (HDF). HDF provides the only end-to-end platform that collects, curates, analyzes and acts on data in motion. The platform allows companies to leverage insights from the data being collected in real time to use for immediate improvements in their business. The more quickly companies can adapt, the better they can serve their customers. This helps avoid the potential for losing customers due to lag time in making proper adjustments.

As a result of the Internet of Things, exclusively leveraging data at rest isn’t sufficient. This data needs to be paired with data from many different sources to provide relevant insights to companies.

Times are changing, and everything is happening at a more frantic pace. The Fourth Industrial Revolution is in full force – don’t be left behind.

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