# Analytics

### Model a business: simulate industrial processes

There comes a point when your spreadsheet models of business processes just don’t cut it. You observe some complexity that is just too difficult to explore. You have questions that remain unanswered because you can’t do…

It doesn’t take long for a conversation on the shop floor of a manufacturing plant to mention lead time. There always seems to be something or other that will affect it, usually negatively. But what…

The Analytics component of ADVANCE helps us focus on understanding how to use measurements to their best effect. Lots of organisations produce data from their management information systems (MIS), and they spew out reports which…

### Production planning

Experienced shop floor supervisors and production managers can often find themselves at odds with the production planning function in a manufacturing business. Tensions emerge between the organisational desire to trust the principles of Materials Requirements…

### Digital manufacturing: start small

While you will find a relentless justification for the need to apply science to manufacturing management in these articles, it would be rather naive to think that just looking after the mathematics will solve all…

### Why is it so hard to adopt Machine Learning?

There are plenty of advocates of Machine Learning (ML) at the moment. Many of them have something to sell, which of course uses ML (along with Artificial Intelligence, AI). ML should be able to help…

### Excel quartile

Similar to the PERCENTILE formula, MS Excel has two functions that enable you to find the value in a range of numbers at a specific quartile. QUARTILE.EXC is used if you want to obtain the…

### Excel percentile

MS Excel has two functions that enable you to find the value in a range of numbers at a specific percentile. PERCENTILE.EXC is used if you want to obtain the percentile excluding the first and…

### Statistics quantiles

Quantiles are useful for talking about where a particular value lies within a dataset. Unfortunately, they are not that widely understood. We can think of quantile as equal portions of the data distribution. Once we…

### Excel: dealing with outliers

It has been said before, but having clean data is one of the best ways to ensure that your analysis is based on a sound footing. In the same way that we can tell whether a…

### Machine learning basics

Machine Learning (ML) is very popular at present. It’s capabilities are almost magical if you listen to the software vendors. There is no doubt that ML enables interesting capabilities. If you have ever browsed Amazon…

### Human Resource Analytics anyone?

People are the key asset of any business organisation. For a business to be profitable we need to manage resources effectively, especially Human Resources. Human Resource Analytics can help. Years of management practice, organisational research…

### Excel: mean, median, mode

A lot of people will use Microsoft Excel to do their analysis as it is installed on their desktop computer. To do basic descriptive statistics you will need to know how to calculate the mean,…

### Fundamental statistics: average and standard deviation

This is the first of a series of posts where I explain some basic concepts for analytics. Fundamental statistics: average and standard deviation in particular, are important to understand. Especially, since statistics has a reputation…

### Data, analysis, computing and creativity

Asking questions of data can be hard work. We can often struggle to frame the ‘correct’ question, that will give us the answer we need. And while we have tools that can ‘drill-down’ and `slice-and-dice’,…

### Data tools: less can be more

The explosion of interest in data analysis has led to a wider audience participating in the development of new methods and tools to help gain new insight. Careers in Data Science are relatively new, but…

### Understanding types of data

Good data visualisation communicates meaning to a wide audience in an unambiguous way. Unfortunately, a lot of data visualisation is not so effective and communicating meaning. There can be many reasons for this, from not…

### Some initial considerations for simulating systems

There are a few approaches to creating simulations that affect how we construct our models. The first approach is to do something called a Discrete-Event Simulation. With this model, we look at our system and…

### Scrub your IIoT data clean

Your IIoT equipment is installed. You can see the devices on your network. Your log files are being written to when the machine runs. What next? Initial excitement can soon turn into dismay when you…

### Simulation as experimentation

Resources are generally more constrained in an SME manufacturer than for a large corporate organisation; there isn’t the luxury of a research and development department, or an intelligence unit that deals with reporting, analysis and…