“We have to stop relying on our gut feeling”
When you are listening to music on Spotify or thinking about what to watch next on Netflix, the platforms themselves often make suggestions. How about a British murder mystery? Or why not the Weeknd's latest album? And these recommendations aren't random. Netflix and Spotify analyze your history and make suggestions that are so accurate that you wonder if they're able to read your mind.
“This doesn’t only apply to streaming services today. All industries make use of data to provide an improved customer experience and to make their business more efficient. So this is something we need to do at PostNord too,” says Landry Ndikumasabo.
Landry is a member of the Group’s Analytics & Automation team, and is currently working to make PostNord a more data-driven operation.
“We want to go from making decisions based on experiences and gut feeling, to decisions that are based on data from real consumer behaviors and insights. Intuition and gut feeling are all well and good, but they do have their limitations.”
“Relying on data allows us to quickly react to changes, and it provides more people throughout the organization the mandate and confidence to make more informed decisions.”
Data can be used to establish how and where consumers prefer to collect their parcels, or smarter ways of managing customers. They can also help with resource-planning and predict potential problems that could arise at a terminal.
“For example, we can predict when a sorting machine will run into difficulties. It may sound strange, but our analyses picks up on tiny signals in the data. The good thing about this is that it allows us to better plan our time during the period that the machines are offline.”
Sweden vs. Burundi
“I was born in Burundi and educated in the UK; and now I’m living in Sweden, married to a Kenyan. This has given me quite a broad perspective that I apply both at work and in my private life. One interesting observation is that Burundi isn’t actually all that different from Sweden. Swedes say a lot without talking much. Even though it may be quiet in a room, an intense conversation can still be taking place. This is exactly what it’s like in East Africa too, where the people are more reticent than in the pulsating culture of West Africa.”
A daily struggle
“I devote my free time to my three children, ages six, four and one. They are Scandinavian through and through. Everything is a negotiation. It’s a struggle every morning to get their shoes tied and to choose a coat. Even though the winter can be a bit (!) of a challenge for someone who grew up in the tropics, I love it here in Sweden. Society runs smoothly and, in my opinion, the corporate culture is extremely open and inclusive.”
A new language
“I speak five languages: English, French, Swahili, Kirundi and Kinyarwanda. I’ve tried to learn Swedish too, but it’s not happening. They say that you can actually ‘fill up your hard drive.’ Which means that if you want to learn yet another language, you have to let one of the others go. But I haven’t given up just yet. I’ll keep on trying. Luckily, Swedes are so good at English, and I work in an international environment at PostNord.”