Editor’s Note: This is a guest blog post from an end-to-end global supply chain services company, Flash Global. The company focuses on high-tech industries such as telecom, data storage, data centers, bio-medicine, and any company that needs supply chain visibility and proactive supply chain services for replacement parts and more. We are excited to feature this company as they deal in the fast-moving world of complex global supply chain solutions. As a transportation management 3PL ourselves, we find it very interesting to come across other companies, also referred to as a 3PL, who offer services that require a lot of focus and attention to several moving parts. Both of our companies service our clients with a backbone of proprietary technology and make a difference through our people and services. We hope you enjoy!
Big Data and Supply Chain Analytics Offering Benefits of Continual Improvements and More
Big data is more useful than many people fully realize. That being said, there are a few different ways that big data can be used to help optimize supply chains for a wide range of companies. These seven solutions can help any business visualize how big data can help make their supply chains more efficient and better optimized to increase their bottom line.
- Planning and Scheduling– Planning and scheduling are perhaps the most important part of any supply chain. So much money can be lost or expended with scheduling and planning and with big data you can truly optimize this process. With the use of big data, you can gain end-to-end visibility so that you know where your items are at all times, you can also attain high-quality decision support which can be crucial if something goes wrong a split-second decision does not have to go without support.
- Improved Responsiveness– this is another factor that can truly be helpful. You can manage the uncertain times of year that come when seasons for certain items come and go. This can also help you decide how to manage new items that are new to your business or to your inventory. This means that you can predict what is going on in a way so that you can better determine what items to buy, what items to forgo, and what items you need more of. This is very important and can help you to truly determine what items you need to include in your supply chain.
- Improved Demand Planning– still another benefit is that you can really predict and meet demand. With big data, you can predict and determine what items are going to be needed as it pertains to demand. You can see what items are selling well, what items did not sell well, and so much more making it possible to forgo getting items that you may not even end up being able to use or sell.
- Order Optimization– optimize the items you are ordering and the ordering process overall. You can improve the number of orders that are on time, minimize the cost of getting items to you, and really make sure that you have what you ordered when you order it. This means that you can truly have the best experience possible without having to worry about it something is going to be on time or late.
- Supply Chain Execution in Real Time– You can see your orders and your supply chain in real time so that you can be sure everything is going smoothly. You do not have to worry about where items are, what they are doing or if you need to make changes. Being able to use big data can make a huge difference and can help you keep your items coming in when they need to be as opposed to having to guess where items are and guess if they are going to arrive on time. You can now see where items are, check the status of shipments, and so much more making this a crucial tool for those that want a hands-on look at their supply chain.
- Inventory Planning and Development– this is another benefit as big data allows users to plan, forecast, and truly optimize their inventory so that they do not waste space or waste money with items that may or may not be working the way they should. You can in effect look across networks to consider consumption rates, inventory levels, and other aspects of your supply chain so that you can make sure you get what you need at all times no matter what. This is great for companies that work with larger amounts of cargo and have issues with receiving too little or too much.
- Replenishment Planning– You can see where more items are needed, see levels of inventory, look across the network of your trading partners as well as in your own inventory and so much more. You no longer have to wait and see if something has been used up and needs to be replenished and you do not have to depend on automatic replenishment that may not be needed on the schedule that has been determined. Instead, you can set up a replenishment plan that works for you and that is going to do all that you need it to.
All of these factors make using big data valuable. Instead of having to depend fully on what you can see, you can predict, use data from past operations, and so much more to make sure that you have the items you need when you need them. This type of analytics can help save you time and save you money and can really help streamline the process overall and make for a much smoother and easier transition. This type of data can also help you keep better track of records and of previous shipments and orders so you can see what you need in the future. This type of data can be used for a wide range of businesses making it highly valuable and useful.