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Dataschool Journal

RCTJ

Japan–based technology provider and consultancy RCTJ caters to mall managers and owners with their "People Counter:" a system of cloud-connected imaging sensors that record the flow of shoppers. The solution should have shone on the shelves, but its connected software was selling it short. RCTJ's CEO contacted Accurat to overhaul the software with the goal of making it easier to implement and use by employees at all levels of an organization.

2017 — 2019
RCTJ
Business Intelligence Spatial analytics software Technology Retail

Process

Through copious interviews with RCTJ employees, we got to know the pros and cons of the program we were tasked with reinventing ("Rainbow"). We learned that Rainbow consisted of three disparate systems: an analytics view, a customization module, and a back office application to connect the two. According to users, Rainbow's setup process was extra cumbersome. Onboarding specialists could spend months customizing the software for clients, manually entering the dimensions of multilevel properties, plus all their nooks and crannies. With this input, we assessed what features were essential, what essential features were lacking, and how we could consolidate functionalities for a streamlined experience.

Given the software's purpose—to accurately reflect a physical location, and activity therein—we studied spatial visualization modes common in urban design and architecture to redesign the front–end interface. We also came up with a brand new, original feature to convey hour–by–hour data and trends over time: a "Heat Sensor" or circular design reminiscent of a clock face.

In order to renovate Rainbow, we had to reverse–engineer it—a complicated process, given code was written in Japanese. Our engineers worked with translators to decode the characters and preserve the software's foundation.

Solution

Our solution—christened DaVinci—automatically ingests dimensions from floor plans. Users can then fine tune the display with a pared down toolkit. Once setup is complete, RCTJ clients can see shoppers, color-coded by age and gender, move through their spaces in real-time. With the ability to easily adjust the view to record different types of activities (i.e. store entrances and purchases), they can measure how traffic may influence particular businesses and vice versa. For closer analysis, they can observe specific time ranges and even see granular historical data, like the weather on a particular date.