The Big Picture of Big Data in Logistics

Transportation KPI metrics benefit from technology deployment
It’s a big buzzword with big results – big data in logistics continues to take the spotlight in boardroom discussions across the Nation with one question behind the chatter: How do we take all our data and make something out of it?
A study conducted by Accenture of more than 1,000 senior global executives found that, while 97% understood how Big Data could benefit their supply chain, only 17% reported implementing any of the findings.
Despite the deficit, data analysts and supply chain managers alike are finding valuable ways to extract the most value out of their data to improve the organization’s flow of information, reduce costs and enhance customer value.
Here are some of our favorite ways to connect big data to your supply chain:
Real-Time Visibility
It’s not a new idea that supply chains operate on quantifiable figures and statistics; but now, those numbers are generated in real-time making it faster than ever to evaluate a scenario and make a business decision with rapid precision. For instance, supply chain managers can track what’s leaving their shelves and what’s leaving their distribution centers in real-time.
Inventory Tracking

Did that product of yours just go viral? Did a huge storm just knock down several trees next to your distribution center? With real-time, big data capabilities, you’ll foresee certain disruptions that will allow you to make faster decisions on whether to adjust your supplies and inventories.

Anticipate Customer Needs
Through the use of big data, companies can create a stronger, more adaptable customer profile to better manage the relationship. Big data in logistics can even help you leverage social media comments and preferred engagement channels to better inform sales and marketing campaigns.
Manage Risks
The supply chain comes with risks that can occur at any time. From disruptive technology to changes in consumer demand, there’s a myriad of ways that your strategic supply chain plan can go wrong. Big data helps to alleviate the impact of risks through a combination of historical data, scenario planning and even risk mapping. Through analytics, you can assess potential problems and address quickly through an early warning before it’s too late.
Keep Pace with Volatile Market
Today’s market requires constant oversight to ensure customer satisfaction and big data analytics gives you the tools to do so without the manual labor. According to the same study conducted by Accenture, companies that make use of big data analytics in operations are five times more likely to report shortened order-to-delivery cycle times.
The big picture on big data is that it is not going anywhere and only anticipated to evolve and further the digital supply chain evolution. Get ahead of your competition now by evaluating your big data needs and implementing a process that works best for your company. Without it, you could be missing out significant efficiency and cost reduction gains.

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