Making the Reading of Data Quicker and More Effective
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Making the Reading of Data Quicker and More Effective

Mario Meirelles, Director Chief Digital Officer, Iguatemi S.A
Mario Meirelles, Director Chief Digital Officer, Iguatemi S.A

Mario Meirelles, Director Chief Digital Officer, Iguatemi S.A

Companies now have access to a lot more data about their customers than ever before. Whether they are interacting with your company or purchasing one of your products or services, you’re getting all sorts of information from them. This holds true for both small and large businesses. How can this data be used to learn more about customer behavior and their desires?

At Iguatemi, we obtain customer data through several channels, including our website and through our partners. Iguatemi One Iguatemi’s VIP relationship program brings us a tremendous amount of input about our customer’s behaviors. We thereby match this information with details on their navigation and their online purchases through our e-commerce platform, Iguatemi 365. This allows us to be much more assertive in our marketing efforts: how and when to communicate with our clients. The data we collect enables us to know what is relevant to communicate to our clients and when. In a secondary way, customer data allows us to be more relevant in our product selection; we can add much more value to our clients by knowing what they want. The more data we have, the more we can be effective in our marketing efforts and in our quest to be relevant to our clients in regards to our product selection.

With the rise of cyberattacks in recent years, the prediction has come true. More than 445 million cyberattacks were reported in 2020. As part of risk management, IT companies now have CISOs (Chief Information Security Officers) who hold cybersecurity high on their list of priorities. Tell us about the importance of refocus on cybersecurity?

While Iguatemi does not have CISOs, we do have very competent teams overseeing the security of clients on both the Iguatemi Group and Iguatemi 365. We are constantly obtaining sensitive information from our clients, such as physical addresses or credit card information. Therefore, no investment whatsoever is done within the Iguatemi Group if we do not have the guarantee that our client is adequately protected through a network of security. We will always prefer not to invest in a certain structure if we do not feel our clients will be protected satisfactorily. Protecting our client’s information is key.

“We can add much more value to our clients by knowing what they want.”

How has the COVID-19 situation created a push towards the adoption of multi-cloud architecture to reduce business continuity risks?

The Iguatemi Group has been adopting multi-cloud architecture as early as 2018 & 2019, as other companies have been doing. COVID-19 was not a big catalyst because we already had plans to implement this kind of multi-architecture to reduce business community risk. In fact, COVID-19 corroborates the fact that we were already taking the correct decision prior.

Does the process of democratization of AI have the potential to accelerate digital transformation within a business? Please elaborate.

AI accelerates the interpretation of data and makes the reading of this data quicker and more effective – be it through search engines, a window/product display or CRM (customer relationship management). Data can be likened to a raw diamond; AI is the way you polish this diamond and bring it back to the client. This not only applies to our digital and online activities, but also to our bricks-and-mortar operations. How do we translate this intelligence to our physical platforms, such as our pop-ups? We are always trying to interpret this intelligence and bring it to the physical realm. Our challenge is precisely how to accelerate this process. We believe both worlds – the omnichannel world – should function in tandem, and AI is a catalyst to accelerate digital transformation on both fronts.

What would be your piece of advice for your fellow peers and colleagues?

One piece of advice that I would give and that I believe differs from the premises any CIO would adopt, is betting strongly on two-way door decisions. These are decisions you can reassess at any given moment, either to cancel or revisit a strategy when things are not going the right way, or to reinforce and further invest in a certain choice when they are moving forward correctly. Any two-way door decision should be based on one critical premise: the client’s security. Adding a feature should be implemented if there is a 100 percent guarantee of the client or partner’s security. Provided you have your client’s security guaranteed and you address the client or partner’s experience, one should be ready to implement the decision. But one should always be ready to make decisions that are two-way door, which are changeable and reversible – this should be true for new solutions, new providers etc. In doing so, this should be true for the partners, offering solutions that can be two-way-door. Wrapping up, we should focus on decisions that we can revisit or if the decision turns out to be the correct one, you can accelerate and add more investment to it.

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