Sep 2 2021 ...
New Nextail report finds that fashion embraces brave new world with data hires
  • Leading fashion retailers increased data talent by over 40% in the last year.
  • Levi Strauss & Co. and Nike outperform other retailers in investments in data-related teams.


MADRID: Leading fashion retailers and brands are increasing the number of data-related professionals they employ as they look to build their competitive advantage, according to new research by algorithmic merchandising firm Nextail.

Analysis of the hiring patterns of 22 leading fashion companies shows that they have increased the number of data recruits by 40% over 2020. In fact, there are 8.2 data-related employees per US $1Billion of revenue among indexed retailers.

The annual Retail Data-Forwardness Index (RDI) measures how much of their overall budget fashion businesses are investing in data science, data analysis and AI by way of such hires. It divides the number of data-related employees by overall revenue for each retailer and creates a score then ranked against comparable retailers and brands.

The RDI shows that sportswear businesses and the big North American corporations are investing the most, hinting that they will be the ones best placed to benefit in the new retail landscape. Standout brands include Nike and Levi Strauss & Co. which head this year’s rankings.

Says Joaquin Villalba, Nextail CEO: “More than ever fashion brands and retailers are investing in talent to help them leverage data in order to future-proof their operations. These professionals empower brands to better interpret data and work with advanced tech across an organisation, to capture the full potential of retailer data and beyond, ultimately providing a better customer experience.”

About the report
Nextail compiled publicly available data on the revenue and profit at the end of each retailer’s FY 2020, as well as the official headcount of each retailer according to its last annual report. To identify data-related talent, LinkedIn Recruiter was used to search for currently employed professionals holding titles of 60+ data-related positions.

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