There is a saying, the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry. The saying comes from a poem by Scottish poet Robert Burns. The saying means that no matter how hard you plan, things still don’t work out. I think of this saying when I think of one of the most critical aspects of predictive analytics, which is deployment.
Here is why. If you have read any of the blog posts on this site, you get a feel for how much of a game changer embracing predictive analytics can be for an organization. But predictive analytics can be hard. It requires new technologies and data scientists. However, even organizations that invest in these new technologies and scientists are finding out these investments are not paying the expected dividends in some cases. This is because the solutions being discovered by the data science team are not being deployed.
Predictive analytics answers high impact questions. This process involves translating the question into a data science problem, identifying the data that is required to solve the problem and then using this data to model the solution. The model is tested and refined to get to the point where the model accuracy answers the high impact question. But this process becomes nothing more than a science experiment unless the answer is deployed in a way non-data scientist decision makers can use.
So, best laid plans in predictive analytics must consider deployment. Deployment in a way where the answers can add the continuous value necessary to make a difference. A good example of effective deployment of predictive analytics can be seen in the Othot platform design. Give it a look. Remember to consider deployment or your predictive analytics plans could end up going awry.