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i2 Next-Generation Supply Chain Management Solution Can Help Companies Manage Inventory Policies for Optimal Business Performance

    Online News published in DMReview.com
December 7, 2005

Continuous management of inventory and deployment policies is a core competence behind the best performing supply chains in today's dynamic and global marketplace. To excel in this volatile economic environment, companies can turn to i2 Technologies, Inc., for next-generation supply chain solutions designed to help them optimize supply chain performance through superior inventory operations.

i2 Inventory Optimization is the first of an expanding software suite and consulting practice being developed at i2, offering a series of optimization solutions that leverage the i2 Agile Business Process Platform. i2 Inventory Optimization helps companies manage their supply chains while simultaneously having the ability to tune their supply chain configuration and policies based on performance. Previous generations of supply chain tools, such as ERP, are static systems and do not allow for the continuous adjustments necessary in a dynamic supply chain environment. The next generation of i2 Inventory Optimization enables businesses to manage the supply chain as they tune specific parameters.

Customers can adapt as the business environment and risks change with visibility to the complete supply chain. This visibility accompanied with decision support tools for scenario modeling, quantitative or subjective characterization of risk, pricing evaluations, transportation adjustments and other potential corrective actions, can adjust business processes for more efficient supply chain operations.

Supply chain operations are becoming more complex as consumer demand changes. Companies must adapt to the increasing sophistication of consumer preferences, localization needs and the trend toward mass customization. These pressures require businesses to have increased inventory visibility, higher service levels and availability due to shrinking order lead times, quicker responsiveness to volatile demand, and the ability to keep up with real-time data as business speeds ahead.

Added issues such as increased outsourcing, consolidation of distribution centers, more complex channel relationships, and product transitions including promotions, mark-downs and a diverse product portfolio can be costly as a result of frequent stock-outs, the need for excessive mark-downs and write-offs, and the loss of market share due to poor visibility.

i2 Inventory Optimization is designed to help companies better manage inventory variability to maximize their business potential. By leveraging these solutions companies may increase customer service levels and inventory turns and build higher margins from differentiated service levels, improve market-share through better fulfillment, reduce logistics costs and inventory, and prioritize the most profitable products and customers. i2's next-generation offering includes new capabilities such as total landed cost analysis, budget and space constrained optimization, and inventory redistribution. Additionally, i2 provides standard integration interfaces from ERP systems such as SAP and Oracle to i2 Inventory Optimization.

Today's announcement is part of the i2 Next-Generation Supply Chain Management (SCM) solution approach designed to help businesses address their most pressing business challenges. i2 Next-Generation SCM solutions are built on the i2 Agile Business Process Platform, a unique service-oriented architecture (SOA) that includes a layer of technology services and a business process workflow engine. The platform is business process management (BPM) compliant and interoperates with legacy, ERP and other enterprise architectures.

i2 Next-Generation SCM Solutions feature a series of workflows based on i2's industry and supply chain expertise combined with easy-to-use visual programming capabilities designed to enable companies to automate solutions. Using i2 Studio, these workflows can be modified to adjust to changing business processes allowing for capabilities to be expanded, and changes delivered to users through a common integrated user interface.


For more information on related topics visit the following related portals...
Business Process Management and Supply Chain.

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