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Five AI opportunities inventory professionals need to know

Tom Nicholls, Chief Commercial Officer at Datasparq

The next era of inventory management

I started my career working on supply chain and logistics challenges over 15 years ago. It’s safe to say that inventory management—balancing the need to meet customer demand with efficient resource allocation—remains a critical function for businesses. Artificial intelligence (AI) has emerged as a powerful tool for inventory managers, offering solutions to these common issues.

Five ways AI can optimise inventory management

  1. Enhanced demand forecasting: Traditional forecasting methods often rely on historical data and may not capture sudden shifts in demand. AI can analyse vast datasets, including internal sales data, external market trends, and even social media sentiment, to generate highly accurate forecasts. This allows for proactive inventory management, ensuring sufficient stock levels to meet anticipated demand fluctuations.
  2. Data-driven safety stock management: Setting optimal safety stock levels is crucial to prevent stockouts while avoiding excessive inventory holding costs. AI can analyse historical sales data and predict future demand variations. This enables inventory managers to establish data-driven safety stock levels, minimising the risk of stockouts and overstocking.
  3. Real-time demand detection: AI goes beyond average demand prediction. It can identify sudden spikes in demand for specific products by analysing real-time data sources. This proactive approach allows for swift adjustments to inventory levels, preventing stockouts before they occur.
  4. Automated inventory replenishment: Manual inventory replenishment can be time-consuming and prone to human error. AI-powered automation analyses sales data and triggers automatic orders when inventory levels fall below predefined thresholds. This frees up valuable time for inventory managers to focus on strategic initiatives and ensures a consistent flow of goods to meet customer needs.
  5. Smart promotions and pricing strategies: Overstocked inventory represents a significant financial burden. AI can analyse sales trends and identify slow-moving items. By recommending targeted promotions or dynamic pricing strategies, AI facilitates the efficient clearance of these items, freeing up valuable warehouse space and optimising capital allocation.

By integrating AI into inventory management practices, businesses can achieve greater efficiency and accuracy. AI empowers inventory managers to make data-driven decisions, minimise stockouts and overstocking and ultimately optimise inventory levels for improved profitability.

Datasparq is here to help

When it comes to exploring the art of the possible with any of the solutions above, Datasparq is on hand to help. We’ve partnered with some of the biggest companies in the world, such as GSK, Haleon and GXO to make the promise of AI become a reality. Get in touch with us today to start your AI journey.

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