When data is performing at its best, it provides you with actionable insights. In other words, it’s not just giving you the information. It’s empowering you to take actions that can further your performance or get you closer to achieving your business goals.
At Agillitics, we often talk about the importance of having data that’s unified and available from a single location – and rightly so. You can’t make your data actionable if it’s not together.
But there’s an even more basic requirement for data if you want it to be actionable: It has to be timely. And by timely, we mean up to the second.
With traditional best-of-breed operating systems, too much of the data that’s available at any given moment is hours, days or even weeks old. There may be a process by which you can recalibrate the data to bring it current, but too often the data is not updated to real time.
Consider three very common scenarios that limit the effectiveness of what should be actionable data:
- Information arrives that an order is going to be late but the information doesn’t update in the system until it’s been in the system four hours. Because the operator didn’t know about the late arrival, he missed the UPS cutoff time and is now forced to either a) disappoint the customer; or b) take extraordinary (and expensive) measures to rectify the situation.
None of this had to happen. If the warehouse operator had been using AgiSight to manage his data, the information would have been updated in real time and he would have had plenty of time to react. It would have been an easily manageable situation. Instead, it became a mini crisis that never should have occurred.
- The team is trying to build an outbound shipment but it doesn’t have real-time data about what’s scheduled to depart the warehouse. That forces the team to choose between two unappealing options: Either put everything on hold until the data is updated, which almost certainly sets them back in their planning, or make educated guesses about what might be going in the trailer – and risk being wrong and having to make last-minute adjustments.
Possibly lots of them.
There is no reason for this. AgiSight would have provided the team with up-to-the-second information about what would be ready to ship and when, so they could have easily built that outbound shipment and seen it depart the warehouse exactly as they designed it.
- The warehouse operator wants to do some coaching of team members who need to improve their performance. The operator has data showing some issues but it’s a week old. He doesn’t know that a lot has happened with the employees in question since that data was new. He also doesn’t know that the latest data shows several other employees have had issues and need the coaching.
So the manager is going to approach certain employees with an incomplete understanding of what’s been happening, while leaving other problematic employees out of the process entirely.
If the manager had been able to access real-time labor data, he would have seen that one of the employees in question had a productivity drop of 50 units per hour just in the last three hours alone. With AgiSight, he would have had that information.
But the siloed labor management system he’s using couldn’t deliver that information when he needed it, so he’s going to embark on a corrective process that’s antiquated from the moment it starts.
The supply chain industry has changed from the days when no one expected up-to-the-second data. Today things move unbelievably fast, and decisions must be made in real time with current information.
The power of up-to-the-second data makes the supply chain more efficient than ever. But there’s jeopardy for the warehouse operator whose system can’t produce real-time data.
That is one of the reasons we developed AgiSight. If you’re ready to operate at this level of excellence, contact us at the information below.