Four Ways To Discover Intelligent Insights In The Intelligent Enterprise

Priyanka Khaitan

As companies are manufacturing more products, opening more locations, working with more suppliers, and conducting business with more customers, data is growing exponentially – not just within the four walls of an enterprise but across the Internet of Everything. Ninety percent of the world’s data has been generated in the last two years alone. We should be basking in this data. Instead, we’re drowning in it.

Supply chains are becoming increasingly more complex. Ordering and fulfillment channels are intertwined. Traditional boundaries are breaking across the value chain and giving rise to new ventures and business models. Consumers are more demanding and impatient. And with data sitting in silos, companies lack end-to-end visibility into what’s going on with their products, partners, and processes.

If a machine breaks, or if a delivery is late or supply is short, your business must depend on IT to pull together information from across systems and landscapes to determine the potential impact of such an event. This process can take days or weeks. And the longer it takes for your business to rectify the situation, the more revenue opportunities you’ll miss and the more customer dissatisfaction you’ll engender.

What is your company’s EvD (enterprise value of data)?

It’s one thing to know there are petabytes of data owned by an organization sitting somewhere; it’s another to make sense of that data and derive value from it in an automated way to keep pace with growing data demands from business and the pace at which business is changing.

Often, businesses struggle to recognize and quantify the inherent value of data. “To unlock the hidden value of data,” Dante Disparte and Daniel Wagner suggested in a recent article, “firms should begin to treat data itself an integral part of their supply chain, because data impacts the entire ecosystem in which a firm operates. Determining not only what EvD means today, but what it will mean for a firm in the future, is a critical part of the thought process.”

In the digital transformation journey, to derive value both today and in the future, we must think in context of business processes that are core to the company. For instance, what is the business value for:

  1. A product-as-a-service company for near-real-time determination of relationships among a sensor sending a predictive maintenance trigger, to the repair done, to the invoice paid, and the journal entry it creates in your finance system?
  1. A manufacturer able to assess the financial impact of supply shortage on customer commitments in near real time?
  1. A healthcare company to ensure compliance through querying the critical products, their bill of material and usage, and sourcing a substitute part from an alternate supplier in anticipation of a quality issue?

Rethinking the data paradigm – with search, discover, explore, and augment

In today’s digital economy, your business needs to run at unprecedented speed to stay relevant and competitive. Your executives must have the insight to immediately see what’s at risk and be able to make data-driven decisions in the blink of an eye. Tanja Rueckert, SAP president of the business unit IoT and Digital Supply Chain, commented, “when a company starts its digital transformation journey, it is critically important for them to have a plan that is supported across the company, so they are able to take full advantage of the data they will have access to, and be able to make smart real-time decisions, securing profitable growth of their supply chain.”

This requires transitioning from a culture of hoarding data to one that generates insights that enable you to analyze and act on your known unknowns or unknown unknowns across different data sets. To harness the value of data from inference through action, we need to challenge the conventional wisdom and rethink the data paradigm in terms of search, discover, explore, and augment:

  • Search: You cannot use what you cannot find. In the world of data, things can get chaotic. Fortunately, technology can dynamically sift through the dark walls of data at its source – be it sensor data from a pump or supply and demand data – and help you find what you’re looking for across systems and applications.
  • Explore: How much do you know about your known unknowns? You need to have intimate knowledge of the known and the unknown – and that requires dynamically exploring relationships across entities in your structured and unstructured data to find links among your people, processes, and products.
  • Discover: What about your unknown unknowns? For instance, if a natural calamity affects an area where you do business, you need to draw unified insights in an automated way from the entire ecosystem to determine the potential impact through real-time search, computation, aggregation, and analytics.
  • Augment: Whether sifting through dark data, discovering revelations about what lies ahead, or exploring correlations between your data and your business, you can augment your journey with breakthroughs in technology. Your ultimate goal should be to break silos and augment intelligence.

Eager to embark on your own journey to search, explore, discover, and augment? Watch this video to see how the SAP Leonardo IoT Discovery solution can help to automatically discover meaningful relationships in your data for near-real-time foresight, end-to-end visibility, and business impact analysis, never before possible.

For more information, contact @pkhaitan.

Priyanka Khaitan

About Priyanka Khaitan

Priyanka Khaitan is Head of Emerging Technologies for SAP Leonardo Internet of Things and Digital Supply Chain Business Unit. She is responsible for incubating and scaling transformational enterprise-class innovations across extended supply chain and the Internet of Things. She also spearheads strategic SAP HANA development projects and customer engagements at SAP.