Importance of Analytics in Supply Chain Management

By Srikanth
8 Min Read
Analytics in Supply Chain Management

“Information is the oil of the 21st century & Analytics is the Combustion Engine” – Peter Sondergaard, Senior VP & Global Head of Research at Gartner, Inc”


In today’s era, it’s very easy to get data but what is tough is to find the right insight. Today’s supply chains are all the more complex and involve numerous interactions where data is captured every second. This is where Analytics comes into the picture. Supply Chain Analytics gives you the power to make key business decisions that have a direct impact on the company’s profitability.

How can businesses benefit through supply chain analytics?

As supply chain analytics helps organizations to play a smart role while making key business decisions, there are numerous benefits for the company.

Helps to reduce costs

As professionals gain access to comprehensive data, it helps the company to move ahead with an integrated planning approach. Moreover, real-time visibility can help to gain actionable insights and enhance the overall efficiency of the operational activities.

Aids to understanding risks

The supply chain can make professionals aware of the potential risks and anticipate what could happen in the near future. This can help the stakeholders to find out ways through which they can mitigate delays, costs and reduce interruptions. 

Helps to plan ahead with accuracy

As professionals analyze the customer data prudently, the overall analysis can help companies to foresee future demand. It can surely help the companies to understand what the customer may purchase after they have placed the initial order.

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Aids to improve operations

While every organization is trying to accomplish a lean supply chain, supply chain analytics can serve to be beneficial. The analysis can help to comprehend the customers’ needs and make decisions accordingly. Through a management solution, the company can also think about ways for optimizing what’s going on with the business.

What is supply chain analytics software?

An Analytics Software can be embedded in the supply chain or it can also be used as a separate tool that helps to gather insights through data. As professionals start using the software, they can visualize data and gain insights in a much better way. Once the information is organized in linked elements, it helps to simplify the task of improving the traceability of products as well as suppliers.

What are the types of supply chain analytics?

According to Gartner’s model, there are various types of supply chain analytics. These include Descriptive, Prescriptive, Predictive, and Diagnostic analytics. However, analytics can be referred to different models based on the form and the function. But, as for now, let’s dive into the types based on Gartner’s model.

Descriptive Analytics

Descriptive supply chain analysis involves going through dashboards and reports to help understand what’s happening across the supply chain. With the help of statistical methods, a professional can gather and organize data regarding the operations.

Prescriptive Analytics

Through such a kind of analytics, professionals can think about determining the best course of action. While prescriptive analytics helps to come up with solutions to problems, it can also help to work closely with logistics partners to reduce the effort in mitigating disruptions.

Predictive Analytics

As analysts use statistical algorithms and leverage machine learning with past data in mind, they can predict what may happen next. Companies use such a type of analytics for developing supply chain resilience and determining the optimal inventory levels. In addition, such type of analytics can help to foresee the occurrence of accidents and come up with suitable responses.

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Which trends of supply chain analytics will prevail ahead?

While professionals try to improve supply chain management through analysis, here are some of the trends that will prevail ahead.

EDI As a Service

Electronic Data Exchange (EDI) is sure to make the supply chain operations smooth. However, companies will have to focus on hybrid solutions for effective data interchange. Instead of using legacy solutions, a cloud-based alternative can transform how global trading partners will communicate.

The advent of Cloud Computing

Cloud computing will soon emerge for delivering IT infrastructure, and software as a service. As the data-driven processes are automated, the cloud will significantly improve supply chain analytics.

Robotic Process Automation

While software can enable to automate repetitive computer-related tasks, this trend will help to improve automation and integrate data with analytics. Way ahead, it will help to streamline the operations and help to eliminate errors individuals are likely to commit.

Deep Learning

As time passes by, deep learning will certainly help to improve supply chain analytics. The techniques based on artificial neural networks will help to track the inventory and natural language understanding will not only help to improve the routing models but also drive the automation of contract management.

Finally, for making better organizational decisions, the team members have to initially gather comprehensive data which can maximize business value. Further ahead, there’s also a need to invest in real-time supply chain analytics solutions. Eventually, when a company proceeds with supply chain analytics in a better way, it can help for long-term sustainability.

Elixia’s Analytics Solution

Since its inception, Elixia Tech Solutions Limited has strived to offer comprehensive solutions for supply chain management. While companies empower the supply chain, the solution offers business intelligence. The Analytics Suite collects all the critical data and provides actionable insights to the management. The real-time notifications and performance reports help you analyze the performance of all stakeholders in the Supply Chain process, identify bottlenecks and take corrective measures proactively. It also helps you identify the gaps in operational efficiencies of overall supply chain processes and take timely corrective actions to avoid operational & cost slippages.

With the use of the Analytics platform, you can quickly evaluate several scenarios, come up with solutions for the complexities across the supply chain and be better in decision making. You can certainly reduce manual work and expedite the response time through automated diagnostics. While your company gains a competitive edge, your team can focus better on resolving supply chain issues and move on with insights through machine learning and advanced analytics.

Key Benefits:

1.Holistic view of Cost Analysis – Identify high spend areas and take targeted actions to reduce unwanted costs.

2.Evaluate vendor performance at your fingertip- Track placement efficiency, rank vendors based on acceptance rate, and analyze vendor share of the business.

3.Vehicle Utilization details – Get monthly, yearly vendor-wise vehicle weight & volume capacity utilization.

4.Reduce your Carbon Footprint – Ensure better capacity utilization & cold chain compliance to keep carbon emission at a bare minimum.

Article contributed by Mr. Sanket Sheth, Founder & MD Elixia Tech Solutions Ltd

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