Xpree CEO Mat Fogarty:
Management struggles to understand and plan for the future. When forecasts are inaccurate, corporations incur huge costs due to inventory write-offs, stock-outs, misallocated resources or cost of capital. Collective intelligence delivers objective, accurate forecasts in real time, thus saving many millions of dollars for our corporate clients. The solution is not being oversold, to the contrary, the potential vastly exceeds current awareness and adoption.
“-If foresight is not the whole part of management, at least it is an essential part of it”- (Henri Fayol, 1916).
In my 10 years experience as a management accountant and corporate planner, I have witnessed multiple forecasts suffer from inaccuracy due to uncertainty and biases. Whether forecasting a launch date, sales volume or cost of development, it is the systematic biases due to incentive systems, politics and common cognitive errors that contribute more to inaccuracy than the uncertainty. The problem stems from the fact that the owner of a forecast is normally the owner of the business unit / sales team / project, and budgets and bonuses are based on forecasts. This necessitates game playing and politics and makes the development of an objective, accurate forecast near impossible.
Collective intelligence can overcome these problems by incentivising a diverse crowd of knowledgeable employees to share their insight, balancing the resulting estimates, and rewarding accuracy and timeliness.
However, we are at an early stage in the development of this opportunity. There is still work ahead of us to develop the ideal mechanism to combine simplicy of UI [user interface] with richness of information gathering. In addition, we need to further develop the way collective intelligence interfaces with traditional corporate structures, processes and systems. These are Xpree’-s challenges…- stay tuned.