What significant changes have you noticed in the last few years, and how has the pandemic impacted businesses and their reliance on technology?
The past few years have been quite the ride. The world as we knew it has changed, all thanks to the pandemic. It is forcing us to re-evaluate the way we live, work, and interact with one another. The most significant change in this phase is our reliance on technology. We’ve gone from face-to-face and in-person interactions to virtual ones, which have become the new norm. The silver lining is that technology has enabled us to work from anywhere, collaborate remotely, and continue our daily lives while maintaining social distancing.
This positive shift toward technology has created a significant demand for new technology solutions. Businesses and individuals seek ways to improve their digital capabilities and stay ahead of the curve. The product life cycle has also significantly expanded, as staying current with the latest technology has become more critical than ever. If products don’t evolve and offer a fair share of value to the end users, they quickly become irrelevant.
The past few years have been a time of significant change and upheaval, and we’ve had to adapt quickly to navigate these challenges. However, with technology as our ally, we’ve persevered and continued our lives as best we can.
Customer data has become more valuable with the pandemic changing how customers interact. In light of this, how is your company leveraging customer data in the food and beverage industry?
The approach to leveraging customer data started years ago when vending machines sold nickel candy bars; we are now refining it with technology. We have always understood the importance of utilising customer data to better understand their behaviour and preferences. Currently, we analyse data surrounding ‘what time of day customers visit our restaurants or log into our app, as well as their buying behaviour'. Leaning on this information, we can tailor our interactions and deals to be more relevant to each customer, straying away from mass marketing and toward a personalised approach.
We aim to reach them at the right time with personalised deals and offers unique to their spending and frequency patterns rather than bombarding our customers with irrelevant messages and promotions. For instance, if a customer works a night shift and typically makes their lunchtime purchase at 4pm, we can use this data to offer them an attuned deal that is more likely to be relevant and enticing to them. In the end, our goal is to provide the best possible experience to each customer and create a sense of loyalty through personalised engagement.
As a recognised leader and expert in your field, I am curious about what technologies you are excited about and looking forward to in the near future.
I don't consider myself an innovation leader or industry expert, as I am also constantly learning and growing with technology. However, I am excited about the recent developments in AI technology, like Chat GPT and other chat-based models. Although there is wariness regarding the implementation of such solutions, they have a great potential to substantially improve efficiency and productivity in our day-to-day operations, which will lead to better results in projects and initiatives. Specifically, developing AI and ML in our industry is valuable in effectively communicating with customers and enhancing their overall experience.
As an ending note, what is your advice for other senior leaders and CXOs working in the food and beverages space? How can they extract the full potential of emerging technologies?
We should constantly look for ways to innovate and stay ahead of the curve. We must keep updating about new technologies and actively engage with and provide opportunities for the next generation of professionals in the tech space. This way, we can benefit significantly from the fresh perspectives and innovative ideas that young professionals bring. By involving them in our projects and initiatives, we can provide them with valuable experience and professional development opportunities and position ourselves to better understand and serve the needs and preferences of this growing demographic. In short, by opening up and collaborating with the youth, we can create a dynamic and innovative ecosystem in the tech space.