Héctor Cobo
Regional Vice President, Mexico, Caribbean and Central America
Expert Contributor

SAS: 30 Years of Democratizing Business Analytics in Mexico

By Héctor Cobo | Thu, 06/02/2022 - 13:00

2022 will be a special and sui generis year in many ways. It comes in the midst of a very different reality to the one we were experiencing at the beginning of 2020, in which people and companies have had to learn to be resilient and adapt quickly to new scenarios. There was also an accelerated digital transformation that opened the way to remote and hybrid work models and changed shopping, learning and entertainment habits.

This year is special for SAS as it celebrates 30 years of accompanying the country's organizations in their analytics and innovation projects, during which we have witnessed advances in the way we use data and the insights that come from them to make decisions and face disruptions that have had an impact on local and global areas.

Three decades of history invites us to reflect on what it was like then to work and collaborate within organizations and how monolithic technology was. We are talking about huge data centers and a large IT team in charge of their management and maintenance.

In terms of data management and analysis, these were carried out by experts who were not always in communication with the key areas of an organization, making it difficult to make decisions on all aspects of the business.

Fortunately, the integration of more intuitive models, charts, dashboards and tools has paired the ground to open the door to collaborators who do not have a technical background but do have business training and who have access to business data and analytical resources to determine, in a coordinated manner, the direction that the organization as a whole will take.

In this way, analytics is already an inherent part of companies, a commodity that serves as a solid foundation on which innovations, such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, the Internet of Things and customer intelligence, and strategies, such as security and risk management, are consolidated.  

On the other hand, the migration from analytics to the cloud has generated greater resilience and responsiveness to changes in the market and political, social and health ups and downs. Moreover, it has made it more accessible to a growing universe of companies that have made it their standard to face their competition and continue to thrive in the new reality that is taking new forms.

The evolution of business and technology that we have witnessed over the past 30 years has led to an accelerated digital transformation in all industries, such as retail, banking, healthcare, manufacturing and telecommunications. This digitalization has also been emphasized in areas such as customer knowledge, better targeted and more effective marketing campaigns, and the improvement of internal processes.  

In this respect, customer intelligence (CI) makes it possible to better plan for the constant changes that will continue to occur in purchasing patterns and consumer behavior. In the post-pandemic era, physical and digital environments combine (phygital) to generate a new generation of data, whose analysis will be critical to broaden customer knowledge.

On the other hand, risk management takes on a new dimension for financial institutions by helping them to deal with economic volatility through better management of their service portfolio. In particular, banks today carry out stress tests to determine the level of risk from the exact knowledge of their reserves and to anticipate possible scenarios in the event of a disruption that could affect the payment of credits, for example.

In addition, the increasing implementation of the IoT and millions of sensors, whose data is processed and analyzed at the edge, have succeeded in optimizing production chains and boosting automation. Complemented by artificial intelligence and machine learning, companies can identify market signals and data to anticipate results, optimize business planning, automate inventory management, and more.

During the time we have been present in the Mexican market, we have established robust alliances with partners and integrators to, together, put into practice our curiosity to know our customers, to know where they are going and what they need to continue to thrive in a highly competitive market.

Without a doubt, analytics has also become more human. It is contributing to building a better world with smarter cities, the development of more effective medicines and knowing the behavior of health, political, economic and social phenomena that lead to a positive impact on the population.

Photo by:   Héctor Cobo