THE COST OF KNOWLEDGE

Retailers and wholesalers have made staggering investments in technologies to enhance decision-support systems that create practical information from mountains of data. Now the time has come, many operators say, to analyze the return on investment.How do retailers and wholesalers know when they have rounded the bend into profit, or even when a system's cost has been counterbalanced by its benefits?

Retailers and wholesalers have made staggering investments in technologies to enhance decision-support systems that create practical information from mountains of data. Now the time has come, many operators say, to analyze the return on investment.

How do retailers and wholesalers know when they have rounded the bend into profit, or even when a system's cost has been counterbalanced by its benefits? Even among those closest to the decision-support systems, payback estimates range from

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