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  • There was a fantastic article in the Wall Street Journal recently – Wall Street to CEOs: Disrupt Your Industry, or Else. A key message from the article, when Ford’s CEO got fired for not acting fast enough or bold enough in fighting all the Silicon Valley start-ups. “To make things worse for established players, investors... Read More »
  • I often get asked what organization design construct is most effective in building out analytics capabilities within an organization. In canvassing our client base, all approaches broadly fit into three organization design constructs: centralized, center-led, and de-centralized. Other than the presence of an Analytics COE, there is no common construct in organization design that I... Read More »
  • Imagining the Supply Chain of 2030

    Kristen Daihes Sep 15th, 2016
      I had the opportunity to join the Supply Chain Insight Global Summit last week in Arizona.  As expected, this summit did not disappoint.  Lora Cecere has a knack for pushing practitioners, vendors, and consultants outside of their comfort zone.  She uses data to weave a story about reality that we cannot refute, and then... Read More »
  • Discovery vs Production with Big Data

    Diego Klabjan Mar 18th, 2016
    It has been noted that big data technologies are predominantly used for ETL and data discovery. The former has been around for decades and is well understood with a mature market. Data discovery is much newer and less understood. Wikipedia’s definition reads “Data discovery is a business intelligence architecture aimed at interactive reports and explorable... Read More »
  • Mathematical Optimization and Machine Learning

    Mohsen Moarefdoost Ph.D. Feb 15th, 2016
    You won’t be surprised if I tell you machine learning, data mining and data science are hot topics today. But, you might be wondering what makes you an expert in these fields? You definitely need to know basic data wrangling, munging and manipulation. Also, you should be familiar with tools like Python, R, MATLAB, and... Read More »
  • (This article first appeared in SupplyChainDigest and was co-authored by Sara Lewis) Recent advances in computing and availability of data have driven an explosion of enthusiasm around predictive analytics. As these algorithms and technology spread through companies and industries, it has become increasingly important to have knowledge of key concepts that extend beyond buzzwords. There... Read More »
  • It is hard to avoid hearing about the $1.5 Billion Powerball.  Along with the size of the prize, there has been a lot of attention on your chances of winning (1 in 292 million).  So, I thought this was as good as any excuse to talk about the expected value.  Here are three lessons: #1:... Read More »
  • The Big Short, a box office hit, details how Dr. Michael Burry (and a select few) predicted the credit and housing bubble collapse and made millions while the entire economy went down the drain. How did Burry end up on top? The key to his success was that he analyzed the fine details: loan data... Read More »
  • NPR’s Planet Money recently did a podcast on A/B testing.  It is worth a listen if you are new to the topic.  A/B testing is a key part of the current analytics movement. The podcast did a nice job in highlighting one of the key case studies on how Barack Obama used it in his... Read More »
  • Yesterday’s Chicago Tribune ran an article on how All State and the City of Chicago are combining existing data sets with predictive analytics to solve long-standing problems.  These problems include how to best conduct restaurant inspections to minimize food-borne illness, how to inspect elevators to prevent problems, and which trees to trim to minimize damage after... Read More »
  • We’ve recently published an article in CSCMP’s Supply Chain Quarterly on the three things that a supply chain manager should know about Big Data and Analytics. The three things are: Big Data is not just for the IT Department There is more than one type of analytics Machine Learning has many potential supply chain applications Follow... Read More »
  • Yesterday’s WSJ ran an article on the importance of analytics (“Get Familiar With Big Data Now—or Face ‘Permanent Pink Slip’“- may be behind a paywall). The article is an interview with an executive recruiter, Linda Burtch, who has helped staffed the analytics groups at Darden Restaurants, Jack in the Box, Leo Burnett Worldwide, Foot Locker,... Read More »
  • Analytics for Small and Medium Sized Firms

    Michael Watson Ph.D Aug 19th, 2013
    A lot of press around analytics is focused on large and exciting projects.  But, analytics can be applied to firms of any size. Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management’s recent magazine published an article, “Think you are too small for Big Data?  THINK AGAIN.“ At Opex Analytics, we are providing a variety of analytic solutions for... Read More »
  • IBM recently published a white paper called The New Software-Defined Supply Chain.   We had a chance to participate in this work.  They paper discusses how 3D printing (additive manufacturing), advanced robotics, and open source hardware may have a dramatic impact on the supply chain. The paper argues that…”despite the press coverage that technologies like 3D... Read More »
  • What is a Data Scientist?

    Michael Watson Ph.D Aug 2nd, 2013
    With the rise of Big Data and data in general (see here for a definition of Big Data), there is an increased need for people to analyze that data to turn it into information.  Thomas Davenport and D.J. Patil recently wrote an article in Harvard Business Review about how Data Scientists are going to be the hot... Read More »
  • In yesterday’s post, we discussed a short definition of Analytics (“the ability to collect, analyze, and act on data.”). Of course, this is a broad definition.  To determine your appropriate analytics strategy, it is important to understand the different categories that make up the field of analytics. A team from IBM published one of the better... Read More »
  • What is Analytics? Part 1: 4 Short Answers

    Michael Watson Ph.D Jul 29th, 2013
    It is clear that analytics is a very hot topic now.  Companies are committed to pursuing analytics and discussing their successes.  Consulting firms talk about their services to help their clients take advantage of analytics.  Software vendors tout their analytics solution. But, what exactly is analytics? Quick searches do not seem to yield good definitions.... Read More »