Suppose a training dataset contains the following inputs:
company size number of employees turnover average salary country years of operation
budget allocated to marketing budget allocated to sales budget allocated to R&D budget allocated to training budget allocated to shareholders
It also contains the column:
...which is what I want to optimise against (i.e. the primary motivation of the model).
For any given set of inputs (company size, number of employees, turnover, average salary, country, years of operation), I want to be able to predict values for the 5 outputs which are most likely to achieve the highest 'profit'.
In this example, would 'profit' be an input, an output, or neither?
I don't believe it's an input, as profit won't be available to input into the model, and I don't believe it's an output, as am not trying to predict profit for a given set of inputs. Rather I am trying to predict the outputs that are most likely to generate the highest profit for that set of inputs (based on previous training data examples).
Is it possible to therefore specify some sort of 'motivation' variable which the model strives to maximise?