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CLIENT CASE STUDY


Large energy company: Geospatial visualization tool

Read how Accenture developed an accurate and agile data visualization application to display downstream supply chain and inventory information.

Overview

Among the world’s largest integrated energy companies, the client is a leading supplier of automotive, marine and aviation fuels and lubricants, as well as commodity petrochemicals and plastics. The client’s oil and gas marketing network supports retail outlets, commercial airports, and military installations in the United States and Canada.

For downstream energy companies, optimizing the supply chain is vital for profitability, growth and market leadership. However, delivering the right product to the right place, at the right time and at the lowest cost is not easily achieved. Accenture implemented an innovative application to help the energy company improve downstream inventory planning and scheduling across its North American operations.


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Opportunity

Assessing inventory needs was challenging due to the scope of operations, and because of massive amounts of data being generated from sources inside and outside of the company.

Managers struggled to analyze trends and variances in traditional report and spreadsheet formats. In some cases, they lacked pertinent information to make timely decisions and take corrective action. Forecasting errors, replenishment scheduling and service issues held back supply chain and inventory improvements.

Company leaders saw a number of improvement opportunities, and turned to Accenture for expertise in supply chain optimization, analytics and big data visualization.

Solution

Accenture set out to develop an accurate and agile data-visualization application to display downstream supply chain and inventory information across North America. The goal was to implement an innovative application to help improve margins by:

  • Assessing inventory and likely demand across factors such as time and geographic location

  • Enhancing the ability to identify variances and trends, so as to reduce demand-assessment errors, excess inventory and distribution disruptions

  • Accelerating the visualization of data for faster, more informed decision making throughout the supply chain

The project team selected Space-Time Insight software, which enables real-time data visualization in Google Earth. Specific features include mapping and web applications, image-based dashboards that can be customized, and alerts shown by location.

The application gives users the ability to see retail outlets with corresponding real-time inventory levels on maps. This capability enables more accurate assessment of inventory and improved demand forecasting.

Results

Selecting high-quality technology tools allowed Accenture to complete the project within the client’s budget and accelerated timeframe for implementation. The innovative application supports faster, data-driven decisions to improve margins in the company’s extensive North American operations.

Advanced analytics and multi-dimensional images, charts, maps and overlays are enabling users to identify patterns and relationships not evident from traditional reports. Through real-time views, users can obtain insight into supply chain constraints, and thus make faster decisions to improve outcomes.

In a highly competitive sector of the energy business, the client is realizing the power of geospatial analytics and visualization tools to optimize the supply chain.