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The combination of shrinking product lifecycles and broad, rapid adoption of new products can wreak havoc on a supply chain. Electronics manufacturers have worked to fine-tune their supply chains to better manage this volatility, using data collection, aggregation and visualization technologies to gain visibility into supply chain activities. This has allowed them to compress their reaction times and minimize the impact of unexpected market shifts.
Yet, even with these tools in place they are still reacting to changes that have occurred and so are at least a step behind the markets they serve. The next phase in supply chain management involves shifting from this reactive mode to proactive management by taking a "big data" approach to consumer demand in which the supply chain plays a pivotal role.
When data from the supply chain and other internal sources is integrated and analyzed in context with external sources of information, both structured and unstructured, the organization can begin to predict future shifts in demand with greater accuracy.
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