Focus on OPTX: Data-driven decision-making benefits both operators and players Rege Behe, CDC Gaming Reports · October 22, 2021 at 8:00 am It’s common knowledge that casinos collect data from slot machines and through player loyalty cards. But the amount of information and data generated through other sources is often overlooked. A casino’s sportsbook, ticketing, lodging, and food and beverage departments, in addition to its CMS (casino management system), all use unique systems that collect data. What to do with that data, how to use it to an operator’s advantage while improving the guest experience, is akin to assembling a jigsaw puzzle while wearing a blindfold. “Even with the biggest players, they can accomplish the first step, which is to bring all the data together into an enterprise format, which would be called a data warehouse,” says Tom Rafferty, co-Chief Executive Officer at OPTX. “But then they’ve spent so much time doing that, that building some sort of operational layer on top of that data warehouse is yet another step that’s very, very challenging.” A Las Vegas-based computer software company that has created a unique technology platform for the gaming industry, OPTX was founded by former casino operators. The platform provides a single, integrated software solution that enables operators to use the data they’ve collected for optimal results. OPTX differentiates itself from similar platforms in the way it creates a holistic overview of data. Rafferty says his team has worked with casinos where pit crews, marketing staffers, player development teams and other departments are looking at data through specific lenses. “You’ve got this very chaotic system that’s only benefitting a certain number of players,” Rafferty says. “You put OPTX in, and all of a sudden this platform that really looks at everything and treats every player as a hosted player for every team player, it all becomes very harmonious.” When team members start working together, Rafferty adds, the workflow on the gaming floor becomes more seamless, and productive. “You have the table team members working off the same application, they’re on their phones,” he says. “You have the host team walking around the floor with their phones or iPads. You see marketing working off that same data for their whole platform and it really becomes this kind of amazing defragmentation of the system.” Co-Chief Executive Officer Brooke Fiumara says one of the distinguishing features of OPTX is its use of predictive analytics to identify potential high value or churning customers. This allows casino staff to actively engage these patrons through immediate, personal interactions. “We think real-time is a very critical thing in what we do relative to other systems,” Fiumara says. “We believe that tomorrow is too late when it comes to managing players who are on your floor.” How collected data is used can be an issue for some casino patrons. Rafferty acknowledges that gaming operators, through loyalty programs, have access to an enormous amount of personal information. And OPTX does use that data – but in a way that can potentially benefit players. “The problem with it today as a customer is you’re not getting any benefit from it,” Rafferty says, “because all of that data is just spread out all over the place. Whereas with a tool like OPTX, you might actually see some return on having disclosed all that stuff, because it can be looked at in concert, whereas before it was just kind of falling through the cracks.” For instance, casinos can dole out the types of comps a player prefers, be it food and beverage or free slot play. “Instead of just wasting $10 on a casual player, we can give them exactly what they want so their overall enjoyment is increased,” Rafferty adds. Rege Behe is lead contributor to CDC Gaming Reports. He can be reached at email@example.com. Please follow @RegeBehe_exPTR on Twitter.