Demanding times: the future can’t be predicted, but it can be modeled
Unfortunately, there can be many challenges on the journey to success, and so real-time recalibration is vital. Why? Because even the most sophisticated supercomputers can’t predict the future. They can’t factor in environmental, political and economic discourses that will continue to test the efficiency and profitability of businesses.
COVID-19, the war in Ukraine and the global cost of living crises are high-profile recent examples of situations beyond our control. More locally, firms continue to be challenged by anomalies no amount of data modeling could have planned for.
The Texas Big freeze in 2021, for example, saw public transport systems shut down. Staff costs still had to be paid while income was zero. Damaged vehicles not only had to be repaired but insurance premiums were adjusted, increasing the total cost of running the service moving forward.
Ongoing in the UK, the 2022 national train strike is predicted to have cost the economy in excess of £100 million – unplanned costs have to be factored into immediate spending and future planning whether these costs are easily identifiable or not.
In all these instances, as in normal times, data is one of the most valuable assets of any organization. Unlocking its value can be a catalyst to positive business outcomes, even when the odds are stacked against success.
For example, at a time when flight risks are high, data visualization can help to
- improve operational efficiencies,
- support business expansion, and
maintain employee engagement.
The total cost of an unplanned event is hard to establish without purpose-driven financial planning and forecasting. Traditional finance processes don’t have the agility to start to support these situations whereas intelligent, automated and frictionless finance processes do.