In today’s highly competitive, omni-channel market, companies are realizing the path to success hinges on their ability to understand consumer behavior. Retailers and manufacturers can unlock significant competitive advantage by leveraging consumer insights to make category decisions and create localized merchandising assortments. The JDA Voice of the Category Manager survey, conducted by JDA Software Group, Inc., reveals findings from nearly 100 professionals responsible for category management and merchandising activity in North America. The report revealed that most companies lack the ability to mine and leverage important customer data, and are therefore failing to meet evolving shopping demands. As such, respondents indicated that their number one investment priority in the next five years is big data and predictive analytics (41 percent), followed by investment in customer-driven data science (37 percent)