Security for the future
It is worth considering that if you decide to buy a commercial analytics
platform you are heavily reliant on that partner. You run the risk of
products no longer being supported or functionality being removed
that you have come to rely on. Companies also go bust, are bought
out, increase prices, and change their business models which may
no longer suit your needs. When this happens, it can take a long
time to unpick their technology from your environment. When you
have business-critical systems being hosted by an external company
it is important to have a clear exit strategy before you enter into any
It is also important to understand the analytics that is being performed
by your platform. Analytical models may not always return the same
exact answers each time they are run, especially in the world of
artificial intelligence. Whether you have a team of data scientists or an
engagement team from the external company it is important that you
understand the ‘why’ of the outputs the platform creates.
There isn’t one right decision
Ultimately, the decision to buy vs. build depends on your customer
analytics requirements and the resources available to fulfil them.
Retailers with exacting needs and a clear vision on how to reach their
goals, may benefit from an exclusively built solution. While those
retailers who are looking for a helping hand, maybe better served
through a global product and third-party support.