How Has Machine Learning Improved Supply Chain Control Towers?

Mar 23, 2022 8:15:00 AM / by ThinkIQ

When it comes to supply chain challenges, whether it be shipment delays, customs congestions, increased premium freight costs, supply and demand variability, quality issues — a lot can and does go wrong.

Recent volatility as a result of the pandemic and now the crisis in Ukraine has exacerbated supply chain disruptions and complexity, creating an even greater need for global businesses to optimize supply chain management.

Fortunately, technological developments such as Machine Learning have emerged that are leveling up supply chain control tower capabilities with transformative results, providing a promising and practical path forward through these difficult times.

Machine Learning - The New Frontier in Supply Chain Control Towers  

Supply chain control towers are critical for supply chain management, acting as a central hub for capturing and using supply chain data for strategic decision-making in line with company objectives.

In the past, companies have managed their supply chains with control towers that have been limiting, providing a certain level of visibility — but to immediate trading partners only.

More recently, predictive alerts and prescriptive decision-support capability have been a key part of the evolution of control towers.

Now, the arrival of Industry 4.0 has brought with it new innovations in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) technologies that take the power of the control tower one step further for unprecedented levels of performance.

These AI and ML-powered control tower solutions result in a performance leap all but impossible to achieve with traditional software, orchestrating realtime collaborative networks that run smarter and faster, and moving beyond just decision-support to include decision-making and autonomous control.

Machine Learning means the system, in effect, learns — it continuously improves and proves itself, gaining ever more autonomy as it does, until eventually this continuous intelligence becomes predictive, resilient, and capable of running the supply network with very little human intervention. This level of extensive automation frees supply chain experts to focus their efforts in other areas where high-value, critical decision-making is required.

AI and ML have the power to correlate and contextualize data, enabling an instant, intelligent, material-centric view of operations. Complete end-to-end supply chain traceability is possible, with advanced visualizations of your manufacturing line and cause and effect identification, so you can identify previously unseen correlations and root issues across your supply chain, spotting anomalies much earlier in the process as well as key opportunities for improvement.

AI and Machine Learning then are absolutely fundamental components of any supply chain control tower operating in today’s manufacturing landscape — it’s all part of the industry’s evolution towards Industry 4.0 Smart Manufacturing.

Essential Capabilities of a Smart Supply Chain Control Tower:

  • Allows for end-to-end visibility across supply chain partners
  • Facilitates information-sharing and realtime collaboration
  • Delivers early warning alerts so you can manage supply chain disruptions before they snowball
  • Provides decision support through predictive and prescriptive analytics
  • Enables a self-correcting supply chain with autonomous decision-making and control through the power of Machine Learning

AI-powered Machine Learning supercharges your control tower and traditional supply chain management strategies, creating a system with the realtime responsiveness, resilience and agility today’s climate so urgently calls for.

Continuous Intelligence Meets Control Tower

The Machine Learning that powers the intelligent control towers of Industry 4.0 allows for fully autonomous Smart Manufacturing. The path to becoming a Smart Manufacturing enterprise is made easy with ThinkIQ’s Transformational Intelligence platform. ThinkIQ takes manufacturing businesses through the 5 stages needed to reach fully automated Smart Manufacturing status, empowering you with the ability to create a manufacturing process that includes complete supply chain traceability, optimized supply chains, and fully transparent, realtime contextualized data. Today’s innovative, advanced Machine Learning means you get early warnings of trouble, uncovered opportunities for improvement, increased plant and product safety, and greater efficiency in moving products to market — all while the system continues to improve itself, for greater and greater supply chain optimization. Businesses today simply can’t afford not to be a part of this new and exciting evolution in Smart Manufacturing.

If you’re ready to experience a transformation in supply chain management through the power of advanced Machine Learning in a control tower, contact us today for a no obligation Smart Supply Chain Control Tower demonstration, and to discuss the 5 stages of becoming a Smart Manufacturer. You can also start by downloading our eBook titled "Advanced Material Traceability Revolutionizes Digital Transformation".


ThinkIQ Guide to Smart Manufacturing

Tags: manufacturing control tower, AIML, supply chain control tower


Written by ThinkIQ

Think IQ

The Industry 4.0 Data Revolution

Proven to improve manufacturing yield, safety, quality, and compliance by making sense of your data.

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