How accurate demand forecasting saves our client R2.6 million a year

12 November 2018

Smart business basics - The success of most businesses depends on accurately forecasting expected daily, monthly and yearly sales: this is basic business 101. This knowledge is underpinned by being able to accurately forecast the expected footfall of any particular store or outlet so that a business can accurately schedule the optimal number of staff to deliver the best service, as well as ensuring that the right amount of stock is on hand to meet that demand. This is particularly important for day-to-day businesses with products or services with a limited shelf-life, or those that depend on seasonal demand, such as hotel rooms or food outlets.

Economists as data scientists

7 June 2018

Hal Varian, the chief economist at Google, is widely credited with suggesting that the use of statistics in data science would be the ‘sexiest job in the 21st century’
[1], and it is worth noting that a number of prominent members of the data science community have economics backgrounds (John Akred from Silicon Valley Data Science[2], and Jenny Bryan[3], now at RStudio, are two who come to mind). However, within the broader universe of data scientists, it would appear as if economists are somewhat underrepresented in this community.

Machine learning in the workplace

18 May 2018


There are several common problems with analysing the data routinely collected by companies: measurement error, missing data values or variables, sampling that is non-random or not representative of the population of interest, and the fact that correlation does not necessarily imply causation. These are problems that require careful consideration before implementing a statistical analysis, otherwise the model can provide very misleading answers.

Deep learning methods

13 April 2018

The application of deep learning methods has made an extraordinary contribution to the fields of artificial intelligence and machine learning. In a mere five years, we've gone from near-unusable image recognition and speech transcription, to a point where we are providing superhuman results for these tasks. Many of these methods may also be used in other settings and it should be noted that the consequences of this sudden progress extend to almost every industry.


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Neil Rankin

The Brickall
CV37 8QL

United Kingdom

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