Logistics Network Optimization: from Data-focus to Information-focus

Abstract: 

What keeps CEO’s up at night is not problems with their data, but problems with their business. Data are only a means to an end, yet they are often presented as the solution to all problems. There needs to be a shift in mindset among Executives, at several levels: (a) a lot of data is not necessarily good: you might be drowning in data but starving for information, (b) fewer data are not necessarily bad: you might already have the necessary data to solve some important problems, (c) much like data, information can be used by algorithms to generate an almost immediate ROI without relying on large datasets.

In this talk we will be focusing on the third point, showing how a digital strategy can be driven by information more than by data, while still relying on advanced algorithms to solve very large scale problems. We will draw from extensive expertise working with companies in the logistics and distribution industry, optimizing distribution networks and their operation: hub-and-spoke configuration, intermodal operation, truck scheduling, and driver fleet optimization. In all these cases, we will discuss how capturing and digitizing the right information in the form of constraints has been critical to producing realistic recommendations accepted by the operation teams on the ground. As a side yet non-negligible benefit, digitized information is knowledge that stays within the company instead of leaving when the expert employee changes job or retires. This results in more resilient companies, robust operations ready for scale, a proactive mindset instead of reactive, and a positive environmental impact in the form of supply chain decarbonization.

Bio: 

Tomasz M. Grzegorczyk is the founder and CEO of Teranalytics, an AI and optimization company specializing in large-scale logistics operations such as production, manufacturing, shipping, and distribution. Before creating Teranalytics, he was a Chief Scientist at BAE Systems and MIT Research Scientist where he worked on computational electromagnetics, scattering in complex media, optical forces, and wave propagation in metamaterials. Tomasz holds a PhD from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, an MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and is a senior member of the IEEE. He served as editor and board member of two international peer-reviewed journals and one international conference, has authored more than a hundred publications and a book on metamaterials.

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