How Big Data Will Shape the Supply Chain of Tomorrow

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Information management is at the top of the supply chain. Big data, and the innovative algorithms that drive it represent the future of supply chain management and the way companies will interpret bottom-line figures. As new technologies abound, companies are becoming even more creative with the way they analyze and store their data. If you’re interested in the way new information management technology can change your supply chain, then read on for the top trends in big data – including those of tomorrow.

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Predicting Analytics

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Analytics have played a huge role in big data and will continue as a key player for the supply chains of tomorrow. Today, predictive analytics are a major way for companies and supply chain managers to leverage big data. Predictive analytics allows companies to interpret historical data to better understand how to improve infrastructure and operations for the future.

According to Sloan Review, when it comes to leveraging predictive analytics there are, “a variety of processes that can be utilized in the three major links in the supply chain: manufacturers, carriers and retailers across forecasting, inventory management, transportation management and human resources.” Predicting data within these areas will drastically increase a company’s ability to evaluate their supply chains and address procurement and other issues before they occur.

Considering the Cloud

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What’s big data without the ability to share it? Over the last few years, “the cloud” has floated its way into the most necessary aspect of big data: storage. Manufacturers and supply chain managers know all too well that when it comes to storage, there’s never enough.  

Cloud data has the potential to easily reach multiple areas within a company. Supply chain managers and other executives can quickly use data to make bottom-line decisions within a company. Solutions such as Google’s BigQuery now easily merge cloud storage with big data with stunning results, including bulk uploading and real-time recording.

Evaluating the Future of Big Data 

Perhaps the most important aspect of big data lies is in its ability to prepare companies for the future. In looking ahead, supply chain managers must also acknowledge the future of information management. So what’s in store for the future of big data? Big Workflow. It’s a new method from the company Adaptive Computing that combines workflow management and big data. This new formula allows supply chain managers to get the most out of the data through implementing a simplified workload with less emphasis on scheduling or resource allocation.  

While Big Workflow is big news for IT, it also allows supply chain managers the ability to succeed in, “targeting the needs of new and existing customers, detecting fraud or security breaches, optimizing logistics and accounting, and streamlining product development,” according to Adaptive Computing.  

For supply chain managers, the most effective big data strategy relies on a careful combination of access and interpretation. Companies will come to expect big data to do the major work as with Big Workflow, but supply chain managers will still be responsible for overseeing the challenges these technologies may present as they grow outside of their respective company’s infrastructure.

Where do you see big data heading in the next five years? How do you hope to leverage it for your supply chain? Share your thoughts in the comments below. [/show_to]

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