“Big data, let’s make you useful.”

A popular buzz word today is “big data”. Big data refers to a collection of data from multiple platforms to generate data set and analytics. Using big data and analytics effectively is in high demand for many supply chain operations. In fact, it is thought to be the revolution in supply chain. Supply chains transact with multiple vendors, manufactures, distributors and retailers which can make for large data sets and unmanageable information. If data is delivered properly it can be effective in the decision making process and improving profitability.

Understanding how to use your data and where your data comes from are key factors in developing useful analytics.

Source of Data

Knowing the source of where your data comes from is most important. The ERP for most supply chains is the hub of the data source. We can also incorporate other systems to create a data warehouse. The common areas of information are usually driven from sales, consumer, inventory and locations. So, the question then becomes how granular you want the information in the system to be and how much detail is coming out. Will the information improve your data or create useless information? Formulating a data map of the sources and depth of information will make for clean “big data”.

Data Mining

Using tools for “data mining” will present patterns and prediction in your data which can helps expose areas of cleansing and help make more accurate prediction when forecasting. Having well analyzed and scrubbed data will add value to your predictions. Systems like Microsoft CRM and Dynamics GP utilize a relational database SQL Server which underneath manages the information. The relational data can then be mined or sliced to draw out information that is most important to making decisions.


Using Microsoft Dynamics GP and CRM, you have access to live real time data and being ahead of demand will give you a competitive edge in the supply chain market. Having real time, clean data, you make more informed forecasts to better serve the demands and needs of your customers. The data will give decision makers insight in shifts to suppliers and to their manufacturing process and demands. (Remember you will have to adjust for seasonal factors and errors.)

Supply Chain is always changing and there are so many variable dynamics of the business. Preparing your data and having better insight will help your business stand out from the rest.

To learn more about big data or get answers to some of your questions, contact Gabby Horst at 1.866.960.0001 or sales@ktlsolutions.com

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