Tech vendor webinars are, by their nature, marketing exercises. I am hoping this one (registration link) will be a bit different. It will be live - no pre-recording or slick editing so let's hope the tech holds up.
As background, I recently had a conversation with Steve Pratt, CEO noodle.ai and early on I asked whether AI based solutions could have predicted there novel Coronavirus pandemic we're all experiencing. The answer was a firm 'no.' I get that. Instead, we talked about the broken nature of supply chain planning, the reasons why supply chains are fundamentally broken and the place of AI driven solutions.
At the time we might have foreseen how quickly the Coronavirus would spread but I certainly had no conception of the impact it would have on everyone and especially the near total lockdown we' experiencing in the UK.
Even so, this is where we are and according to noodle.ai, the company is as busy as ever fielding questions about how its solutions can help deal with bottlenecks, spikes and collapses in demand.
I am especially looking forward to hearing Steve rip up the idea of the 'war room' as a way to create programs, develop strategy and tactics. in these conditions. To use his words from the briefing notes made available to me:
They're gonna do a bunch of spreadsheet analyses and try to sort through what is demand and what is supply and try to match the two and some very, very simplistic analysis...They'll make peanut butter decisions. So just spread everything across everywhere or stop everything. And that's going to lead to bad outcomes.
And the consultants brought in to oversee the war room will charge millions of dollars for those spreadsheets. In times past this would have been acceptable 'tick in the box' expenditure to keep executives safe in case it all goes wrong. In the current climate business leaders want solutions - not spreadsheets.
I am also looking forward to hearing some of the on the ground stories illustrated by customer experience. From what I've heard, the story is highly variable. Food manufacturers are going hell for leather to produce as much as possible. Luxury goods manufacturers have seen their markets tank. We will hear more tomorrow.
In the meantime, welcome to the new abnormal.