Big Data LDN catches up with Paul Winsor, General Manager, Retail at DataRobot
Q – What does your day job entail?
Retail has never been under more extreme pressure. This tension comes from the increased expectations of the empowered consumer and the need to have an accurate inventory to deliver goods at a time and location that is convenient for the consumer while simultaneously delivering operational efficiency.
Whatever the challenge, retailers need to understand how an investment in AI technology can deliver real value. As a result, my role is about articulating why retailers should invest in AI to support decision making and aid problem resolution.
Q – When did you realize that you were suited to a career in data?
I’ve spent over 30 years working in the retail industry. A third of my career was at Sainsbury’s, and my most recent role in the organisation was developing a data-driven strategy with suppliers. It was here that my interest in using data to make a difference peaked. In this role, I used data to improve supply chain performance and solve business problems.
Harnessing my knowledge of the retail sector with the power of the DataRobot platform is proving to be a perfect combination.
Q – What piece of advice would you give to someone starting out in data?
Start small! Taking a big bang approach to using data and AI is not the best route to success.
Find a business challenge that needs solving, build a cross-functional team of experts in their field, and then identify the data sets and technology needed to move the needle. Above all, focus on the goal which is to find an answer to the problem.
In other words, be clear about what business issue needs to be resolved and then use data and business expertise to diagnose and treat the problem.
Q – What do you think will be the hot topics at Big Data LDN 2019?
There is growing recognition that if organisations don’t prepare for the next level of competition which will be AI that they will run the risk of being left behind.
AI can provide the transformational change needed and improve the ability to predict business outcomes. As a result, I’m expecting to hear how forward-thinking companies are already transforming their businesses, taking the leap to absorb, embed and move forward with AI-led decision making.
Q – What can people expect from your session?
I’ll be posing the question 'Why are organisations now choosing to embed AI as part of their DNA culture?'
I’ll explain how companies can build an end-to-end AI strategy that turns raw data into real business value. Use cases will not only demonstrate what can be achieved but prove that if your competitors are not already using AI, they soon will be.
The focus will be on understanding the potential offered by AI and automated machine learning and what steps you can take now to prepare for the future. Looking forward to seeing you in the AI Lab Theatre at 11.50am on 13th November 2019!