Which Analytics Tools Can Help You Deal With Material Shortages?

Data Analytics

Even in today’s highly developed market economy, material shortages may happen. It is a problematic situation that poses numerous challenges for companies. However, many enterprises do little to no preparations to meet these challenges when they finally show up. As a result, they end up accumulating excruciating losses that impede their business operations.

To prevent a situation like this, you should take the necessary steps to prepare your organisation for material shortages. One of the best ways to do that is by using analytics tools. With the help of modern-day technology, you can ensure the issue will be dealt with smoothly, and your business will get back on track in no time.

Data analytics tools like R and Microsoft Excel can help you reduce shortages and save costs. Combined with a business continuity management system to create a foolproof risk treatment plan and an Enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, they can make your life as a business owner much more manageable.

Here are some of the best analytics tools and ways to use them to overcome material shortages.


layout of an open source programming language tool

R is an open-source programming language. The primary characteristic of this type of software is that it allows you to write code to do virtually anything you want. For example, you can use it to determine the root cause of a problem or if some minor recurring issues can cause you further trouble in the future. Alternatively, you might use R to collect data and centralize it.

R was built specifically to deal with complex statistical computing tasks, making it a true powerhouse when dealing with material shortages. It could make the task of prioritization a breeze or allow for faster decision-making – whatever you need.

Once you know what you have to do to ensure the flow of resources in your company – R is an all-around tool that will help you get the job done. As a bonus, it is highly compatible and comes with numerous packages.

Microsoft Excel

Microsoft excel

Nowadays, if you need to organise some things, you probably want to do so in a spreadsheet. In that case, Microsoft Excel is just what you need. It is the most widely used spreadsheet software on the market, and for a good reason. Its ease of use and accessibility are standout features that few other companies can compete with.

Form creation, PivotTable, and VBA are only some of the outstanding elements Excel provides. Thanks to them, you can sort or total the data you need and visualise the data you gathered. Consequently, it can help you prevent supply chain disruptions and increase the company’s productivity in the face of a crisis.

Although Excel works best with small data, its plugins allow you to scale your operations to your liking. So, whether you run a small company or a significant enterprise, you might want to give Excel a chance.

Apache Spark

apache spark desktop layout

Apache Spark is an open-source processing engine created to help data analysts and data scientists do their jobs. It is fast, dynamic, and easy to use. Among its standout features, probably the most beneficial is how well it handles vast volumes of data. Combined with Excel, it can create a robust data processing framework for all your needs.

Another amazing thing about Apache Spark is its seamless integration with the Hadoop ecosystem. Nevertheless, because it uses RAM instead of local memory, it is much faster than Hadoop alone. An integrated library of machine learning algorithms is also a welcome addition.

If you struggle with loads of data, this solution might be right for you. Apache Spark can help you prevent leaving the chain in limbo when a shortage occurs, regain control of your shortages, and monitor suppliers.


Statistical Analysis System layout

Statistical Analysis System, better known as SAS, is a commercial statistical software suite. It is a tool used by businesses for predictive analysis. It is an outstanding option for profiling customers, data mining, and predictive modelling.

What makes SAS so special is that it is an easy-to-learn tool. As such, it is perfect for beginners. Besides, it offers fantastic user support and is incredibly versatile.

When dealing with material shortages, SAS can help you identify low-effort, high-return areas, effectively reducing storing, handling, and transporting costs. You could also use it to predict what might happen with your material flow in the future. In other words, this tool allows you to anticipate problems and act before a catastrophe occurs.

The Bottom Line

Nowadays, data analysis to ensure a smoother material flow is an inseparable part of doing business. Otherwise, companies risk falling behind on their orders and harming their reputation.

Before a crisis strikes, consider implementing the tools mentioned above into your business processes. Each of them can help you avoid material shortages and deal with them if they occur. While Microsoft Excel can help you visualise the necessary data, SAS and Apache Spark will allow you to predict your operating costs and other critical elements to ensure your organisation runs smoothly.

Regardless of your choice, implementing these tools could be the difference between using scarce materials more efficiently and frequently dealing with a bottle-neck or storage overflow.

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