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Author's profile photo Mark Darbyshire

Agile Analytics’ Casual Consumers

Last time we looked at casual users, those that may only interact with the data infrequently. Casual consumers are just as relaxed. But, unlike the home chefs of the Casual User, they’re more likely to be the people who go to restaurants, people who like to eat out. They are alert to old data, data that’s past its sell-by-date.

“People who go to restaurants” covers a very broad church – from the hipsters of East London going to ironic spots such as the Cereal Killer Cafe to traditionalists dining at Rules, to the rest of us getting a bacon sarnie at our local cafe. This range highlights other dimensions: quality and ubiquity, convenience and immediacy, and is applicable to the vast array of food providers.


Be they Gregg’s the Bakers, Peruvian street food or the ubiquitous fast food of KFC, Burger King, all must address the expectations of their customers on these terms: the consumer wants to be assured the ingredients are fresh and are of good quality. Their customers also want consistency; and they want immediacy. Translated into analytics, the consuming user wants correct, up-to-date information, consistently presented and analysed and they want it delivered now, as it happens, to the device they are currently using.


The way restaurants ensure their ingredients is through their supply chain – a network of trusted partners who provide the ingredients and help manage what happens if or when that fails. This means they can run their restaurants without constant fear of food poisoning, as their suppliers check and report on their own produce before its distribution.


Consistency is assured by “sticking to the recipe”, adhering to a defined and agreed way of achieving the desired outcome. We discussed this in the last blog, that of the Casual User. Consistency is even more important to this group of picky consumers: they will simply move on if they feel what they’re getting isn’t going to taste right, isn’t going to give them that sense of satisfaction.

Having known and trusted sources and known and trusted processes gets an organization the analysis, in a reliable fashion. But how do you get that analysis to the right person, “in the right way”? Rules. Rules define who (by role, by name, by organizational level) should receive an analysis, an update, or a notification. Rules define how (in terms of presentation and device, in terms of privacy and role) an item should be received. Rules can also be used to manage timeliness – be that duration-based escalation or ensuring that receipt occurred.


Which got me thinking…. breakfast is often quoted as being the most important meal of the day. So, what’s stopping the casual consumer being fed tasty insights every morning, on their way in, be it email for a train- or tube-commuter, or, for the car-based, their morning queuing assuaged by a lady with a nice Radio 4 voice telling them just how well their business is doing.

Find out more about how SAP and its customers do analytics at the SAP Innovation Forum on June 4th. Details here:

Again, many thanks to Pete Humble, who provided much of the input into this blog

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