Here’s an example of how food and beverage companies can benefit from open data.

You have probably heard that “Data is the new oil”. Because just like oil is used to power machines, data is used to power technology like artificial intelligence, business insights, and predictive analysis. And just like oil becomes more valuable when refined, data is also more valuable when processed. But there the similarities end.

The more data is used, the bigger the value. Unlike oil, its value does not decrease as it transforms into heat or light. And when you combine oil..? sure you get more oil. But nothing more spectacular happens. Data, on the other hand, can when combined with other data create magical insights and open up whole new worlds.

oil on asphalt

What is open data?

Open Data is data that can be accessed, used, and distributed by anyone. Open data can be of various kinds like financial, statistical, geographical, and meteorological. Open data can create possibilities for innovation, drive revenue, economic growth, speed up development, and much more.

Where does open data come from?

The most common distributers of open data are the public sector. Sweden has, through the Agency for Digital Government, talked about the possibilities of increasing the country’s Gross Domestic Product by actively providing and using public open data for development and innovation. In the private sector, more and more organizations begin to realize the opportunities of using and sharing external and internal data. 

Our friends at Coop, have just started their journey by opening an innovation platform to i.e. discuss the possibilities of providing their data as open-source.

The story of how we used open data to reduce wastage.

You are walking through a grocery store after a long day cooped up in your home office. Your stomach rumbles as you do your best to avoid the other shoppers, and you mutter for yourself that it would have been a better idea to just order pizza instead. Just as you turn around a corner, you are suddenly overflowed with the warm smell of freshly baked bread, donuts, and cinnamon rolls, coming from the in-store bakery. And for a moment, everything is just fine.

At Elvenite in our team “Data Driven”, we take all possibilities and opportunities we can to use open data. During the autumn of 2020, we started a project where we wanted to see whether we could optimize the in-store baking by analyzing open data.

Bake-off is in some ways a big enabler for additional sales, but can, unfortunately, create quite big amounts of wastage. The goal with the project was to create an optimization model for when it is most efficient to bake, in order to minimize the number of baked goods that end up not being sold.

To better understand what mattered for a specific grocery store, we used open data about the demography of the area to analyze whether we could see any patterns in the sales. We also used data about cafés, geography, schools, and workplaces and compared all this data with data about sales, cross-promotional sales, campaigns, seasonality, different days, and hours per day.

From the data analysis, we could understand what affected the number of baked goods sold, and what did not. We then built an optimization model the store could use to tell what, when, and how to bake during the day.

The project is in full swing at the moment, and we will talk more about it soon!

Tray of muffins

More open data = More possibilities!

This is just one example of how open data and the combination of different datasets can be utilized to improve or develop better products and services.

Unlike oil, the price of data does not increase as the amount available decreases, since data is not a finite resource. And as the amount of open data resources increases, the possibilities are, however, infinite.

Do you want to learn more about how open data can benefit your business? Get in touch by the form below.

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