Data Analysis as the Key to Good Loss Prevention and a Great Career

Eric Mickelson

Technology is amazing. It has changed our personal lives, the way we do business, and is changing the loss prevention profession in every way. We are surrounded by CPUs and memory chips. As a result of this melding of mankind and microprocessors, we have become exquisitely skilled at hoarding data. We collect every bit of data possible and store it for later access. Most of us don’t know exactly where it goes or even why we are saving it, but we just do. Two even greater mysteries are how to get the data back and how to turn it into valuable information to benefit your enterprise and your career goals? This is the essence of data analytics.

Data analytics (DA) in business is the scientific analysis of raw data to create information that will allow us to draw assumptions and logical conclusions about what that raw data represents and how it can improve profitability.

As a retail security professional, you are likely very familiar with the data hoarding tendencies of your enterprise. This is why you must be highly knowledgeable of data and DA. This knowledge allows you to provide the highest level of performance to your employer and the greatest opportunity to promote your career and improve the quality of your life. The days of just being able to resolve theft cases are quickly coming to an end. You must act now to become technically savvy regarding databases and basic computer architecture. Failure to act, and very soon, will cause your career to come to a screeching halt when you reach the “digital ceiling.” I refer to it as the digital ceiling because it is the threshold in any enterprise where you just simply need to know computers and data to be productive at that level. You will forever bump your head on the digital ceiling until you make the effort to gain the tools and knowledge to smash it into the billions of bits it is made of.

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Read more about how Mickelson suggests you can avoid the “digital ceiling” in the My Turn column in the March-April 2016 issue. The contents of the entire print magazine are available online here as well as in a PDF version via the Print Archive.

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