How retailers can get data, according to Maxim Cohen

Maxim Cohen, chair of research chair in data science at McGill University. (Photo: Courtesy – Wayne Egan)

Guest Blog. It is a small thing to say that we are living in a data age. It is said that 90% of the world’s data has been created in the last two years. Internally, exploiting all this data and converting it into useful information has become the most important issue for companies today.

Maxim Cohen, chair of the Data Science Scale AI Research for McGill University retailers, said that although it could inform the current situation, the data could also be used as a “future-oriented scoping lens”.

“Data is the best indicator of knowledge and information about your own business,” he said. “Then why not use it wisely to guide future strategic decisions?”

Maxim Cohen was recently appointed as the first Chief Artificial Intelligence Officer (CAIO) at ELNA Medical, the largest integrated network of medical clinics in Canada.

In their book, Retail Demand Forecast: A Practical Guide to Data and Predictive Analysis, Cohen et al.. Discuss ways and means of leveraging data to predict retailer demand. Accurately predicting the needs of each product and the price of the customer helps retailers guide them in their operational decisions and ultimately drive profitability.

“You can use data to uncover hidden trends that allow you to improve business practices and operational decisions,” said Maxim Cohen.

But how do you predict customer behavior in new situations? According to Maxim Cohen, it’s about finding innovation through experimentation.

For example, using A / B testing একটি a scientific method of comparing two or more forms to determine which one performs best — can at the same time accelerate learning outcomes and help companies avoid significant risks. Uses new data.

Maxim Cohen urges managers to become familiar with conducting field experiments and understand how they can take future decisions beyond their comfort zone and open new horizons for their business.

“I recommend enrolling in data science executive education programs so that we can learn at least some of the data language and talk to data scientists,” said Maxim Cohen. “Leaders should also consider hiring a chief data scientist or CAIO, one who reports directly to the CEO and understands any undiscovered opportunities in the benefits of data analysis.”

Maxim Cohen is co-director of research at EBCD’s Retail Innovation Lab, which is partnering with Canadian convenience store chain Couche-Tard to develop the “convenience store of the future.”

“We use the data to understand customer behavior inside the store while fully protecting consumer privacy,” explains Maxim Cohen. “What is the customer’s trajectory? How much time do customers spend in each corner of the store? Then we try to use this data to provide a better customer experience.”

And yet, algorithmic predictions have often been associated with computer-generated inequalities. The McGill Reporter reports that maintaining AI ethics is a priority for Maxim Cohen, who has integrated social welfare and sustainability into every step of the research program.

Moving from predictive to prescriptive AI, Maxim Cohen plans to use data and AI to drive a circular economy, digitize supply chains to optimize small business efficiency, and make consulting legal aid more accessible, the McGill reporter reports.

“We need to bring together regulators, lawyers, economists and data scientists, and control the AI ​​space to maintain the best interests of the people as a key priority,” said Maxim Cohen.

Carl Moore and Stephanie Ricky. Carl McGill is an Associate Professor in the Dissociated Faculty of Management at the University. Stephanie is a journalism student at Concordia University.

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