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Andriy Boyko (AL-KO): "Analytics Allows to Move Along with the Market and Not Catch Up with It"
Author: Oleh Shpak
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22
June 2018

CEOs of the leading companies are fully aware of the importance of ongoing market monitoring, its analysis and forecasting. Andriy Boyko, CEO at AL-KO reveals what impact analytics has on various areas of business, how it should be used and what capacities need to be deployed.


Analytics is the Key to Success

The importance of the analytical product can hardly be overestimated, since regular work with analytics itself is exactly what helps to pick the right course of development. As a CEO, this is my ultimate task. This is why, I make sure to keep a close eye on the unfolding market situation to know whether the market is growing or going down, to be aware what is happening with the brands, which producers are succeeding and which are not, who entered the market and who abandoned it. The same applies to the product groups. All of this is enough to test the waters and compare the external situation with your own.

After that, other interesting questions come up. For instance, how much does my brand cost, how well-known is it, what additional opportunities does it create for me and how? Or even more detailed once like, say, what impact does shop assistants or installers have on the decision-making process? All these analytical data provide a certain picture of the world, so to speak, based on which I make my strategic decisions. It goes without saying that the analyst has to be able to use them correctly. Otherwise, all this precious information will end up being nothing but a pile of useless paper on the desk. Plus, it has to be used constantly, since the market is ever-changing. Being able to react to the changes quickly, provide quality offers and make accurate conclusions are the signs of professionalism.

One of the key features of analytics is that it is unbiased, but the conclusions made based on it can have a different overtone to them which can further influence the overall success. The analytics allows to see what is happening within the company and to evaluate whether we are heading in the right direction without being controlled by emotions. When other people notice this professional analytical approach, the company gains more trust and extra opportunities. When I started working at AL-KO Ukraine, I decided to seek AIM’s assistance. We have developed market analytics which has been unseen before. After I have unveiled it to the team, it became clear to everyone that I had my feet planted firmly on the ground -knew where I was going and what needed to be done. Analytics gives confidence, especially when we can combine data derived from different sources. For instance, I have got trusted findings of research study done by AIM, our in-house analytics and market feedback, all of which can complement each other effectively.


Matter to Be Handled by Professionals

In-house analytics is definitely crucial. It allows to see the matter from different angles. I receive reports all the time, and no matter where I am, I make sure to check them out, and either respond to them or analyze the information to know how things stand with the sales, payments, debts and account state. To top it off, there is still a portion of reports touching upon specific product segments etc.

That being said, one shouldn’t be under the illusion that own analytics is the best and the only one. To me, cooperation with AIM provides an unbiased outside perspective, and not only on the business itself but also on the market, enabling to see the whole picture, make different conclusions, compare what is happening within your own business with the way the market is moving.

E.g. the market has grown by 10 percent, whereas we have grown only by 5. This means that we aren’t doing enough in a certain area. Without analyzing the whole situation, you can miss out on that and arrange work improperly. There is nothing worse than moving energetically, but in the totally wrong direction.

Handling and analyzing information accurately can lay strong foundation for the future, giving us the in-depth understanding of where we will be earning money in 3-5 years. We are delivering projects that will be developing later on, but the customers will be ready for them by then. In other words, we wish to move along with the market and not catch up with it. This is exactly where the analytics saves the day.

When there is no analytics or it is not handled correctly, the cost of mistake can be extremely high. It is very easy to slip up at the initial stages, thus deviating even further from the proper course. You will waste the time and money that you will never be able to get back, while your competitors will leap forward.


Customer is at the Center of It All

To me, customer centricity is absolutely crucial in my business. If I receive valuable insights and use them correctly, my clients get more advantages. They will order more products or services which will create additional opportunities for our company in the long run.

Going shopping and asking around about what is being bought or requested could be enough for someone, but for me this is a situational thing. This gives you only a certain perspective which won’t let you make a general conclusion about the whole market. To predict the customer’s desires, we perform general analysis of not only what is going to happen in the future, but what happened in the market earlier, a retrospective of sorts.


Cooperation with AIM

Flexibility and customer-oriented approach are what I appreciate the most about working with AIM. It’s essential to me. I can make a call in the evening requesting certain materials to be ready by morning and be sure that it will be done. Perhaps, it is not very considerate, since someone would have to work overtime for this; however, the result will be achieved. I need to count on my supplier, since it is crucial for my business.

I would also like to emphasize AIM’s innovativeness. The team always forges ahead. Occasionally, I think that they are diving way too deep into the details and using the materials later on would be hard for me. However, eventually I see that it all comes together beautifully - the result meets my requests and can be easily applied in the future work. The way they plough this information field saves me a ton of time, since all I have to do is just make relevant conclusions based on analytics delivered by AIM.

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