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The Supply Chain Management Blog covers the latest in SCM strategy, technology, and innovation.

  • May 7, 2018

Discovering Knowledge with Data Mining in SCM Cloud

Evelyn Mei
Product Strategy Manager

Across the enterprise software space, data is being collected and accumulated continuously. Enormous value can be uncovered from transactional data, user behavior data and many other kinds of records that are readily available in the system. However, for an analyst who uses traditional analysis tools such as Microsoft Excel or simple statistical software, the sheer volume of data is prohibitive. This is where Data Mining technology could help.

Data Mining is the process of discovering patterns in large datasets. It combines Machine Learning, Statistical Methods and Database Systems technologies. It is a key enabler of knowledge discovery in data.

There are many potential areas for application. Personalized User Experience and Community Decision Support are two promising examples.

Personalized User Experience

User behavior records are the best reference for user experience improvement. They can not only be used to improve the software as a whole, but can also be analyzed individually to create a personalized user experience. Some use cases are

  • Extracting click sequence in a typical workflow and suggesting “the next action” for the user.
  • Reviewing the popularity of all the options in a menu and moving the most frequently chosen option to the top.

With these simple yet powerful enhancements, users can get work done faster and enjoy greater happiness at work.

When Data Mining is automated, the system will be able to continuously calibrate to users’ preferences and continuously improve performance. As a user comes to work and interacts with the system every day, user experience just gets better and better.

Community Decision Support

Effective decision making is vital to the success of any organization’s supply chain.  Oracle SCM Cloud has strong built-in Business Intelligence capabilities, which provide visibility into detailed causal data and enable more informed operational decision making.

In Transportation Management, for example, when a user picks a carrier for a shipment, an appropriate Data Mining algorithm will be able to consolidate his/her decision pattern,  summarize decision context, and share this information across users in the same organization. This can help the user and his/her colleagues make similar decisions in the future, increase visibility in the entire team, and facilitate discussions about decision quality improvements.

In addition, Data Mining technology also opens up another opportunity – leveraging community data and “crowdsourcing” best options.

By joining a community of users and sharing data anonymously,  each user’s knowledge base will be extended drastically. Now, in our previous example about picking carriers, not only will the user be able to review his/her own organization’s preference, but the system can also supplement it with community information and make suggestions like “80% other users have chosen Carrier X for this type of shipment”.

This anonymized avenue for getting recommendations from the community has exciting implications. It has great potential for encouraging users to learn from each other, coming up with best practices and improving supply chain management in the industry as a whole.

How to make it possible?

Oracle Advanced Analytics is a combination of Oracle Data Mining and Oracle R Enterprise. It delivers predictive analytics, data mining, text mining, statistical analysis, advanced numerical computations and interactive graphics inside the database. It brings powerful computations to the database resulting in dramatic improvements in information discovery, scalability, security, and savings.

Oracle is applying Artificial Intelligence and machine learning to its entire next-generation Cloud Platform services to help customers lower cost, reduce risk, accelerate innovation, and get predictive insights.

In February this year, Oracle President of Product Development Thomas Kurian demonstrated the latest advances in Oracle Cloud Platform, expanding its Oracle Cloud Platform Autonomous Services beyond the Oracle Autonomous Database, to make all Oracle Cloud Platform services self-driving, self-securing and self-repairing. With its enhanced suite of autonomous Cloud Platform services, Oracle is setting a new industry standard for autonomous cloud capabilities.

Please read this Press Release: Oracle Demonstrates Advances in Autonomous Cloud, Extending Autonomous Capabilities Across Entire Cloud Platform  

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