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Vendor View: Brainpower for rent

Vendor View: Brainpower for rent

A quantitative analysis approach can take the complexity, unpredictability and massive amounts of data and turn it into a competitive advantage

Joe Forbes is director and co-founder of Biarri Pty Ltd

Each year the mathematical discipline of Operations Research saves large companies millions of dollars by helping them optimise complex problems.

Operations Research can help with the following business challenges:

  • Decision Making - Quantitative insight into complex problems
  • Cost reduction - Decreasing cost or investment
  • Forecasting - Providing a better basis for forecasting and planning
  • Scheduling - Efficiently scheduling staff, vehicles, facilities and equipment
  • Planning - Logistics network and facility location
  • Routing - Vehicle route optimisation
  • Pricing - Dynamically pricing products and services
  • Recovery - Gaining greater control on the day-of-operations
  • Throughput - Increasing speed or throughput, decreasing delays.

The widespread use of enterprise resource planning software and operational management systems means that CIOs and organisations have massive amounts of quantitative data about their business available to them. A quantitative analysis approach can take the complexity, unpredictability and massive amounts of data and turn it into a competitive advantage by providing simplicity and clarity.

To succeed as a powerful business improvement tool, mathematics must be:

  • Easy to apply to real world operations
  • Easy to understand via intuitive interfaces and summaries
  • Easy to access via variety of channels (consulting, models, web, mobile services, etc)
  • Affordable with minimum capital spend
  • Fast and reliable
  • In the past, an organisation would contact one of the big management consulting firms or software companies to provide optimisation support. This would involve large amounts of consulting time in addition to purchasing the optimisation and modelling software up front for a large set fee. The corporate IT and purchasing teams would get involved and the whole project would grind to a halt.

    Today, organisations such as Biarri make operations research more accessible to CIOs by providing specific optimisation models that can be implemented quickly and easily without the usual IT complexities and can continue to be used by existing staff members.

    Projects can start and finish in a matter of a few weeks, so companies can see their return on investment almost instantaneously. Alternatively, if an organisation doesn’t want an optimisation model tailored specifically for them, they can access the software themselves, on a software-as-a-service basis, instead of buying it ‘up front’ saving further cost.

    If you think that in your organisation there are lots of small day-to-day decisions that are being made on gut instinct, there are too many decision factors, data or information that is not being used and a requirement to reduce costs, then it could be time to adopt a more scientific approach. Biarri launch ‘Workbench’, a web-based service enabling customers to access its tools via the internet later this year.

    Joe Forbes is director and co-founder of Biarri Pty Ltd

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