Data Is Key
Data has always been critical to continuous efforts- you can manage what you can measure as the aphorism goes. Although it’s complicated, possible to measure virtually every aspect of a retailer or CPG value chain with regards to the impact on the environment. Direct energy usage both in-store and in the warehouse, CO2 release from supply-chain and manufacturing, procurement of resources impact, and levels of recycling can all be easily measured. Now with emerging technologies, even more, granular data can be extracted and used. The WEF estimates that over the last five years IoT solutions alone have helped food retailers reduce CO2 emissions by over 2 million tonnes. The central role should be clear of identifying, measuring and managing environmental impacts.
Scope, Speed And Scale Are Essential
The problem is not much in retrieve the data, but in analysing it at the speed and scale required to make meaningful and timely changes. Resembling data from several devices, facilities, processes and locations can quickly become overwhelming. Most of that data currently sits in a myriad of fragmented data silos occurring across the business and up and down the supply chain. It’s very diverse, from gCO2/KM for distribution to kilowatt-hours consumed by facilities to the energy consumed for every degree of cooling used. Juggling individual spreadsheets, or manually integrating data from different databases is no longer a feasible solution.
An enterprise data platform are the necessary foundation for the fast, granular data and analytics needed to effectively manage your sustainability strategy.
Credible, and Auditable Insights
You need auditable and reliable data as the important ingredients to internally monitor and report on sustainability goals, but also as the basis for transparent and relevant external communications with customers. Customers are increasingly wary of unsubstantiated claims around sustainability initiatives and want to see real, hard data on progress to change their purchasing patterns. Clear credible, what’s needed to fuel marketing communications and either win or simply retain, these customers.
The CPG and retailer of the future will be leveraging this enterprise-wide data platform to not only monitor environmental performance but to proactively spot areas where short and medium-term actions are needed and understand which investments should be made to deliver the best profitable sustainability return. Using data and analytics to model and predict the broad impact of specific measures, and to successfully map the complex interactions each decision has on the environment, will become more and more vital as the speed, variety and volume of data increases.
An Inflection Point
These emerging demands and the datafication of sustainability and data-driven sustainability initiatives to supporting our customers across multiple industries and departments. We believe that companies are now at a key inflection point. To progress and meet the demands of staff and consumers, as well as increased critical observation from regulators, public authorities and investors, they need integrated and automated data analytics.
Piecemeal, department-level point solutions will not deliver the transparency needed to deliver the changes required. Now is the time to design data-driven approaches that can truly put sustainability at the heart of your business.
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