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Competing on Analytics
By Thomas H. Davenport
This article originally appeared in Harvard Business Review Article Reprint No. R0601H

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Harvard Business Review articles are brought to you by Zurich HelpPoint as part of the Managing Risk Series.
Zurich neither endorses nor rejects the information presented in the article. We do not guarantee the accuracy of this information or any results and further assume no liability in connection with this publication including any information or methods contained herein.

Competing on Analytics

The Idea in Brief
It’s virtually impossible to differentiate yourself from competitors based on products alone. Your rivals sell offerings similar to yours. And thanks to cheap offshore labor, you’re hard-pressed to beat overseas competitors on product cost. How to pull ahead of the pack? Become an analytics competitor: Use sophisticated data-collection technology and analysis to wring every last drop of value from all your business processes. With analytics, you discern not only what your customers want but also how much they’re willing to pay and what keeps them loyal. You look beyond compensation costs to calculate your workforce’s exact contribution to your bottom line. And you don’t just track existing inventories; you also predict and prevent future inventory problems. Analytics competitors seize the lead in their fields. Capital One’s analytics initiative, for example, has spurred at least 20% growth in earnings per share every year since the company went public. Make analytics part of your overarching competitive strategy, and push it down to decision makers at every level. You’ll arm your employees with the best evidence and quantitative tools for making the best decisions—big and small, every day.

The Idea in Practice
To become an analytics competitor: Champion Analytics from the Top Acknowledge...

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