Competing on Analytics\nBy Thomas Davenport & Jeanne Harris\nHarvard Business School Press, 2007, $29.95\n\nTom Davenport may be a business strategy guru, but he\u2019s also a fierce Boston Red Sox fan. In his new book, Competing on Analytics: The New Science of Winning, written with Jeanne Harris, he notes that the numbers prove pitcher Pedro Martinez should have been pulled earlier from the ill-fated game 7 of the 2003 American League Championship Series. The current Red Sox organization\u2019s ability to crunch numbers\u2014and create new recruiting metrics\u2014fueled its 2004 World Series victory, he says. Could your business do the same\u2014use analytics to outsmart competitors, strengthen staff and optimize key business processes? You not only can, but you must, Davenport argues. \n\n\n\nBetter business processes are one of the last ways to differentiate yourself from close competitors in today\u2019s global economy, he states. Firms that are successful analytical competitors select one or two distinct capabilities\u2014attributes where they outshine rivals\u2014and then apply extensive data and systematic analysis to bolster those capabilities, Davenport says. Companies like Anheuser-Busch (which uses a mobile workforce to feed data into a closely held analytics system called BudNet to optimize beer sales across geographies) are proving the approach\u2019s value, he says.Davenport shares satisfying examples of how companies like Capital One, Harrah\u2019s Entertainment, E.&J. Gallo Winery and American Express use analytics to create advantage. The second half of the book, a how-to guide, details getting started and executing. A concise discussion of the architecture of business intelligence explains key technology issues.As Davenport notes, CIOs will shape the analytical future. Without a consistent, enterprisewide approach to data management and a flexible BI architecture, a company can\u2019t become an analytics champ.