Optimizing the Supply Chain with AI

By CIOReview | Monday, November 19, 2018

Managing today's supply chain requires a large amount of diverse data from multiple resources to meet the complex operational requirements and customer demands. Massive excel spreadsheets, customer complaints, out-of-stock notifications, and backorders are the data typically considered to analyze the number of products to be bought, manufactured, and delivered.

Machine learning makes it possible to discover the patterns in supply chain data through algorithms that spontaneously pinpoint the most influential factors to a supply network’s success. Detecting trend patterns in the supply chain data can revolutionize any business type. These algorithms are finding new patterns in the supply chain data every day without the need for manual intervention to guide the analysis. These algorithms iteratively query data with constraint-based modeling to find the core set of factors with the highest predictive accuracy.

Today’s predictive analysis make use of machine learning approach which includes algorithms to analyze diverse datasets. These tools combine and analyze huge amounts of data and also predict the pricing and maintenance, and in turn, regulate the inventory levels. Machine learning provides improved pricing models by combining multiple data sources and also offers a holistic approach to setting the relevant prices. Such analytics provide a company-wide view to tailoring the prices according to the current markets, geographical regions, and other parameters which will eventually increase sales and profits.

Optimizing the supply chain using predictive analytics can create a competitive advantage, but might seem like an overwhelming project to undertake. The question here is, how to move from a reactive approach with limited historical data to a proactive approach using predictive data? Machine learning and predictive analytics tools are not just for big companies. Multiple tools are available for even small- and medium-sized firms that take advantage of readily available data that move the business forward.

Predictive analytics, with machine learning tools, improves and optimizes supply chain operations. Companies will continue to invest in technologies that allow them to take a proactive approach to serve their customers better and increase their ROI.