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With built-in AI capability, Oracle finds huge demand from retailers for its Demand Forecasting Service

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Retailers can now improve inventory management through a single view of demand throughout their entire product lifecycle with the next generation Oracle Retail Demand Forecasting (RDF) Cloud Service. With built-in machine learning, artificial intelligence and decision science, the offering enables retailers to gain pervasive value across retail processes, allowing for optimal planning strategies, decreased operational costs, and enhanced customer satisfaction. In addition, modern, intuitive dashboards improve operational agility and workflows, adapting immediately to new information to improve inventory outcomes.

The offering is part of the Oracle’s Platform for Modern Retail, all built on the cloud-native platform and aligned to the Oracle Retail Planning and Optimization portfolio.

“As customer trends continue to evolve faster than ever before, it’s imperative that retailers move quickly to optimize inventory and demand. Too little inventory and customers are dissatisfied. Too much and retailers have a bottom line problem that leads to unprofitable discounting,” said Jeff Warren, vice president, Oracle Retail. “We have distilled over 15 years of forecasting experience across hundreds of retailers worldwide into a comprehensive and modern solution that maximizes the forecast accuracy for the entire product lifecycle. Our customers asked, and we delivered.”

For example, the offering was evaluated against the data of a major specialty retailer following the 2017 holiday season. The scenario ran 2.2M units sold, representing over $480M in revenue. With the forecast accuracy improvements, the retailer could have achieved the same sales with at least 345K units less of inventory. In tandem, the retailer could have improved 70 percent of promotional forecasts using completely automated next-generation forecasting data science– all while delivering the same level of service to customers.

“As unified commerce sales grow, the ability to support all four business activities (demand planning, supply planning, inventory planning, and sales and operations execution/merchandising, inventory and operations execution) across all sales channels becomes even more important. A 2017 Gartner survey of supply chain executives highlighted the importance organizations place on their planning capabilities.” Of the “top three investment areas from 2016 through 2017, 36% of retail respondents cited upgrading their demand management capabilities,” wrote Gartner experts Mike Griswold and Alex Pradhan.


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