Managing large volumes of near real-time data from multiple sources of input is a challenge for many businesses — particularly those companies that are managing their supply chains with a series of disparate and disconnected tools. While these tools may be somewhat integrated, they can be dependent on data from multiple streams. Instead of residing in a centralized location, critical information may be scattered across the supply chain, kept in functional siloes and tied to individual technology solutions.

This can dramatically affect the ultimate results of supply chain digitalization. Human analysts, as well as advanced technology engines, may have trouble accessing data that’s relevant, current, and reliable. Data may be segregated across functions, so the organization lacks end-to-end transparency and a single perspective on the value network. Lag times, created by suboptimal data management or cloud delivery solutions, can significantly impact an organization’s ability to sense and respond immediately to disruptions or new information— no matter how sophisticated the supply chain technology toolkit is.

How is this lack of effective data management impacting companies’ ability to achieve their key strategic objectives? In a Gartner study of more than 400 organizations, 84% of chief supply chain officers reported that they could service their customers better with data-driven insights. And an equal number of respondents stated that they needed more accurate data to predict future conditions and make better decisions.1

Big Data Is Only Getting Bigger

The broad availability of digital capabilities like artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), data science and advanced analytics has been nothing short of a game-changer for the world’s supply chains. No matter how geographically distributed the value network is, and how many partners it includes, today even the most complex global supply chain can be digitally connected via intelligent solutions in near real time.

Whenever an exception or a disruptive event occurs, anywhere in the chain, it can be recognized and addressed by all partners, immediately, in a synchronized and collaborative manner. The supply and demand volatility of 2020 and 2021 clearly demonstrated the value of digital transformation and end-to-end connectivity.

The advanced technology that enables near real-time monitoring and communication depends on data for its success. Across the value chain, every second of every day, each partner is digitally contributing information about costs, timing, inventory levels, product availability and other key metrics. Out in the marketplace, customers and selling partners are continuously feeding back near real-time insights that reveal the granular details of demand changes.

But that’s just the beginning. Today’s forecasting, cognitive business planning and execution optimization engines also depend on enormous volumes of third-party data — including news, weather, and social media — that impacts end-to-end supply chain performance. Enabled by AI, ML and predictive analytics, these engines are incredibly powerful, and accurate, at translating huge amounts of raw data into strategic, actionable recommendations, often autonomously. 

Luminate Platform: Built to Capitalize on the Power of Data

As the leader in supply chain solutions, Blue Yonder created Luminate Platform, a cognitive business platform layer designed to seamlessly integrate the activities of planning, execution, and commerce. This truly connected, boundaryless solution unifies all value-chain partners, as well as third-party data streams, on a single platform, helping to solve the growing problem of large-scale data management. Luminate Platform enables businesses to leverage the strategic value of their enormous data volumes, instead of viewing big data as an administrative challenge.

Luminate Platform is the digital command center that uses information from across the supply chain to generate cognitive insights, identify disruptions and opportunities, and recommend strategic actions. It supports self-learning and democratizes supply chain digitalization, so every function and partner has equal access to data — and optimization engines consider a diverse range of functional outcomes and priorities as they ingest data and make decisions.

Luminate Platform unifies all supply chain functions and trading partners via a holistic, truly integrated technology ecosystem in which data is aggregated and accessible across the value chain, without any functional roadblocks or lag times. Companies can work from a single source of data-driven truth, eliminating data redundancies, disparities, and siloed workflows.

A Best-in-Class Platform, Enabled by Best-in-Class Partners

What’s needed to support this robust ecosystem, fed by data? Scalability, security, data integrity, real-time responsiveness, and exceptional processing speeds. As a cognitive, unified, “always on” foundation, Luminate Platform is built for reliability, customer value and data management leadership through Blue Yonder’s strategic partnerships with other industry leaders.

Because Luminate Platform is delivered in a software-as-a-service (SaaS) model on Microsoft Azure, customers can benefit from battle-tested scalability, maturity, and security — as well as real-time availability and connectivity across the value chain. Blue Yonder’s partnership with Microsoft Azure is foundational to the capabilities of Luminate Platform and its core data management, processing, and storage functionality.

Recently, Blue Yonder launched a partnership with Snowflake that will position Luminate Platform customers to leverage its Data Cloud and Retail Data Cloud offerings to access, share and consume live governed data, industry-specific datasets and data services at scale — without the latency, cost and effort required with traditional marketplaces. Snowflake recently named Blue Yonder a 2022 winner of its “Powered by Snowflake” award, based on Blue Yonder’s commitment to transforming access to disparate data for supply chain management.

Snowflake enables organizations to mobilize their data, which means Blue Yonder customers will be able to leverage Data Cloud to unite siloed data, discover and securely share data, and execute diverse analytic workloads. Wherever data or users live, Snowflake provides a single data experience that spans multiple clouds and geographies.

What impact does that have on Platform customers? Think about the massive amounts of data from customers, partners and suppliers consumed by your company — terabytes of data inundating every touchpoint of your network. Users, siloed by disparate data-driven workflows, have been making decisions based on slow, incomplete, and disconnected data. By unifying Luminate Platform and Data Cloud, these tightly integrated global solutions will create a common, single source of data users can make sense of, analyzing the same data with greater accessibility and cost efficiency while shattering the old silos throughout the network. This “one-stop data shop” will provide every user, data scientist and engineer the ability to consume and act on the same data.

But it’s not just about one version of truth, and it’s not just about making data actionable and dynamic. The combined power of Luminate Platform and Data Cloud allows users to execute at a pace far greater than before. Imagine being able to scale 20x faster data ingestion at fractional costs and millisecond start/stop response times across all users, all from the same source of data. Having end-to-end visibility of the entire network and leveraging the same common data at a fraction of the time and cost, can significantly increase your performance and scalability. That’s the power of data reimagined, and it’s just the tip of the iceberg of the value Blue Yonder’s Luminate Platform and Snowflake’s Data Cloud jointly provide.

Maximizing the Value and Impact of Data

As the industry’s only unified, end-to-end business platform designed to cognitively knit together the many tasks of planning, execution and commerce, Luminate Platform delivers superior large-scale data management. The advanced capabilities of Blue Yonder software — including AI, ML, and predictive analytics — demand reliable streams of real-time data. By providing access to that data via a cognitive, unified, high-performance technology foundation, Luminate Platform enables those solutions to make their greatest possible impact, driving a high return on investment and lasting strategic value.

12020 Gartner Data Literacy and Digital Dexterity: Prerequisite Talent for the Digital Supply Chain Survey