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    Digital interactions make it easy to acquire data in large quantities (for which we speak of big data). The key question is: how best to use this data capital?

    Paolo Desinano

    Data are a basis for generating knowledge, i.e. they are a cognitive resource. We can increasingly contract with evidence and make our knowledge more reliable. In short, approaching reality more effectively (at least in principle). This means, for example, knowing better the behavior of our customers, their expectations and improving our services. Among other things, the data produced by technological systems (for example air conditioning) also make it possible to increase the efficiency of energy consumption with a view to environmental sustainability. But the importance of data also concerns, for example, our collaborators and therefore obtaining indications to improve the working environment and the organizational climate.
    However, it should be noted that having large amounts of data is not enough to obtain the above mentioned benefits. There is no automatism between the quantity and variety of data available and the achievement of results. Data is a precious tool but it expresses its value when integrated into a strategic framework. In other words, big data is transformed into a resource only if objectives and methods are defined. For example, if a restaurant intends to increase its contractual power towards F&B suppliers, it is essential to have analytical data on purchase volumes and frequencies, payment terms, interconnection with warehouse information systems, etc. If, on the other hand, a hotel intends to pursue a differentiation of service towards its guests, data relating to the type, volume and frequency of their consumption will be essential in order to guarantee satisfactory levels of hospitality and continuity of service.
    In short, the business strategy offers decisive indications about the data to look for, the methods for capturing them, storing them, processing them to obtain information and knowledge to distribute to decision makers and executors.

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