Current Issues

Regular Industry Development Updates, Opinions and Talking Points relating to Manufacturing, the Supply Chain and Logistics.

AI – Unlocking the Secrets of the Global Supply Chain

14-Dec-2017
AI – Unlocking the Secrets of the Global Supply Chain
Supply chains are becoming ever more complex as organisations respond to the demands of an eCommerce dominated world. In the bid to retain control, organisations are now collecting huge amounts of data as products are tracked from one end of the globe to another - and it is this data that is set to provide the perfect platform for Artificial Intelligence (AI).

As Alan Gunner, Business Development Director, Adjuno, explains, from revealing problems in certain locations at specific times of year, to predicting potential operational disasters and mining global data insight to rapidly reconsider supply routes in response to economic or climate events, AI will transform both tactical and strategic supply chain decision making.

The recent hurricanes in the Caribbean, US, India and Bangladesh have not only devastated communities but also fundamentally compromised global supply chains. And while organisations clearly had a few days’ warning of these monumental weather events, few had any way of effectively managing the situation to mitigate the potential damage.

Today’s incredibly complex supply chains are increasingly monitored in minute detail. Products are tracked and operational performance monitored as organisations look to drive the continual improvements in efficiency required to meet escalating demands. Add in the adoption of the Internet of Things (IoT) to deliver even more detailed, real-time location and performance data, and organisations should be able to achieve new levels of agility and responsiveness.

Yet much of this granular data remains unused – it is simply impossible using traditional manual data mining tools to pull valuable insight from such vast data resources in a timely and cost effective manner. The arrival of AI and machine learning is set to change all that.

Using AI, organisations will be able to unveil essential information about operational performance - not just today but in the future. The key is the combination of the wealth of historic and real-time data now available, both internal and market specific plus external data sources, including weather, plus the growing sophistication of AI tools. Over time, and with scale, this powerful combination is set to transform supply chain operations.

Automated Decisions
The ability to rapidly harness insight from a mass of data – both internal and external – creates the opportunity to reconsider supply chains both tactically and strategically. Those suspicions about underperformance in certain locations at specific times of year, or days of the week, can be quickly verified – or dismissed. Potential operational risks can be predicted, enabling companies to introduce the right corrective measures. And global data insight can be mined to not only forecast the likely impact of a weather event but also rapidly reconsider alternative supply routes.

For organisations trying to determine how best to trade in a post Brexit world, this extended insight can drastically reduce the risk associated with embracing new suppliers, freight operators and border crossings. The ability to use AI to mine a mass of market data will be transformative – providing insight into essential aspects of performance and operations across new markets and routes that can improve the quality of – and confidence in - decision making.

The introduction of AI is not just about automation or leveraging machine learning to squeeze a fraction more efficiency through the supply chain – although that is always welcome. It is about decision making: it is about automating the supply chain with a better decision. And as the pressure to create the perfect supply chain continues, human processing alone will not be good enough: those organisations that embrace AI and add intelligence to decision making will be best placed to both respond to the inevitable disasters and plan for a very different, very profitable, future.

‘A revolution happened in the way we buy services last week – and no one has noticed!’
2 days ago
Hot Topics at GS1 Connect? Labeling, Blockchain and More
2 days ago
Retailers must Embrace Change
3 days ago
Labeling Solutions That Bridge Islands of Data
1 week ago
My Journey to the World’s Most Important Gathering of Supply Chain Leaders
1 week ago
Workforce of the Future
2 weeks ago
Securing your supply chain against political uncertainty
2 weeks ago
On-demand warehousing could help retailers score big this summer
2 weeks ago
Half of organisations set for major procurement and supply chain AI investment within two years
2 weeks ago
Brexit, the weather & online shopping: How Britain’s favourite conversations are shaping supply chains
2 weeks ago
The Road to Regulatory Compliance for Your Supply Chain Labeling
2 weeks ago
The War on Packaging
3 weeks ago
Five data dramas that keep your CIO awake at night
3 weeks ago
As sales fall new report finds many department stores’ websites suffer from clunky integration and poor delive
4 weeks ago
Got Your Surfboards Ready to Master the Wave of Digitalization?
4 weeks ago
TrustArc to Offer IAPP Privacy Core® GDPR Training to Address Compliance Requirements
4 weeks ago
The Market has never been Stronger for Horizontal and Vertical API Platforms
4 weeks ago
Selecting the best Transport Management System - One of the most important logistics decisions you’ll make
1 month ago
“Digital Transformation” and Supply Chain Planning
1 month ago
Coolest Advice for Making Blockbuster IoT Devices?
1 month ago
The Fall of ‘Made in China’
1 month ago
How can artificial intelligence help the food industry?
1 month ago
Streamlining Operations With Waveless Picking
1 month ago
Creating a common standard for the fashion supply chain…
1 month ago
5 Steps to Improve Your Business’s Supply Chain
1 month ago
Procurement is joining the dots with technology to achieve greater strategic benefits
1 month ago
Don’t get red-carded shipping World Cup items into Russia
1 month ago
Trash talk: how waste management could become an engine for business growth
1 month ago
Could consumers drive a business tech revolution?
1 month ago
Jungheinrich Opinion: The Connected Engineer
2 months ago
Debunking the myths of the Hybrid Cloud
2 months ago
How to Future-Proof a Retail Business
2 months ago
How Enterprise Label Solutions Streamline Supply Chain Management
2 months ago
Ignorance 4.0? UK manufacturing and engineering competitiveness at risk from lack of knowledge
2 months ago
Untangling S&OP and S&OE
2 months ago
The ghosts of retail past, present and future
2 months ago
How to safeguard customer loyalty using digital platforms
2 months ago
The last mile starts with a single step
2 months ago
How citizen developers can speed up business app development
2 months ago
RFID – The missing link in customer insight
2 months ago
Turning blockchain into a real supply chain advantage
2 months ago
Achieving a Sustainability-Centric Retail Model
2 months ago
Gartner Says Global IT Spending to Grow 6.2 Per Cent in 2018
2 months ago
Monster opportunity: the Vampire Economy will take wings this year with late night deliveries
2 months ago
Falsified Medicines Directive: What are the practical considerations for wholesalers and Logistics Partners?
2 months ago
UK manufacturing sees solid growth in March
2 months ago
Elevating IT in financial services
2 months ago
The best, not the biggest
2 months ago
Addressing SME GDPR Misperceptions
2 months ago