The scale of consumer demand – and the need for accurate forecasting and fast response to demand – was the starting point of the ADVANCE ('Advanced predictive-analysis-based decision-support engine for logistics') project which is designing a software program specifically to fulfil these needs.
The technologies available through the Internet, combined with continued advances in logistics software development, have given supply chain management an enormous boost – far greater than those who first promulgated the supply chain could have anticipated. The scale of solutions has increased while the volume of transactions has grown at a staggering rate.
Still, logistics managers have long been after a technology solution that would offer a secure system for scheduling and planning, one that would provide maximum benefit to multi-carrier, multi-mode, and multi-leg shipments within an overriding business process system.
This system would necessarily handle domestic and international transactions within a logistic trading community. The Internet could act as the means of communication between traders and customers. Logistic managers have wanted such a system to deliver both historical and real-time information in a cost-effective manner, to as far a geographic range as possible. Enter the ADVANCE project that will offer such a software-enabled solution. The project kicked off in September of this year.
The ADVANCE system will move users away from arduous rule-of-thumb solutions towards an integrated solution than can span Europe in terms of access and support. Decision support will be based on historical and real-time information, use of connectivity tools, and data that has a company's own criteria built in as a critical advantage.