Blog

Will Analysts Become Extinct?

Saturday, June 2nd, 2012

In a word, no. But their role is changing as technology changes.

Hiring a first analyst becomes almost a rite of passage for growing companies, but why? The divide between the complexities of data collection and the immediacy of street sales has long necessitated people to bridge that gap. The problem has been that salespeople far outnumber analysts, so in periods of high workload the analyst has more than he/she can deliver on, and the salespeople get frustrated. Analysis becomes both a bottleneck and an ivory tower. It doesn’t take a new analyst very long to realize they have something everyone needs. Thus begins the Ivory Tower.

Analysis is a powerful tool, but often what really gets used is fairly simple: What are our least profitable states? What are our brands and packages doing in the market? How do our brands stack up against our competition?

So the future of analysis is getting the facts into the hands of the people who turn those facts into dollars in the most profound and elegant way. These facts should not be in a crystal ball; there is no need of that. They should be readily at our fingertips for discovery and immediate use. That is possible, finally. And that is what we do.

Analysts will not become extinct, but their ability to adapt will be sorely tested in the next decade. The future is at street level.