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SAP Debuts New AI Offerings for Supply Chains


Enterprise application software company SAP has introduced artificial intelligence (AI) advances for its supply chain solutions.

According to a Monday (April 22) news release, SAP said these AI-driven insights from real-time data will help its customers use their own data to make better decisions across supply chains, streamline product development and make manufacturing more efficient. 

“Businesses today are confronted with challenges ranging from supply chain disruptions and labor shortages to geopolitical uncertainties,” said Muhammad Alam, member of the Executive Board of SAP SE, SAP Product Engineering. “SAP recognizes the imperative for agility and intelligence, driving innovation with AI-powered solutions to streamline supply chain and manufacturing processes.” 

SAP said that having accurate and relevant real-time information helps offset the impact of supply-chain disruptions on suppliers, manufacturers and distributors, noting that its customers have seen improvements in supply chain workforce productivity, and a decrease in overall supply chain planning costs and inventory carrying costs.

Last month, SAP created the new role of chief AI officer as it aims to drive cloud revenue with the help of rising AI demand.

That executive, Philipp Herzig is tasked with overseeing SAP’s AI implementation throughout its services suite.

Herzig said that more than 24,000 SAP customers have adopted its AI solutions, with fewer than 1% of these being clients still using on-premise systems. He added that it’s easier to fashion “out-of-the-box” AI services for cloud users requiring little or no retraining.

Elsewhere on the AI front, PYMNTS on Monday spoke with Akli Adjaoute, a 30-year veteran of the artificial intelligence space and author of the new book Inside AI.

“Don’t expect it to add to the AI hype machine,” PYMNTS wrote. “Instead of speculating about the technology’s ability to think and reason … he emphasizes its role as an effective tool rather than an autonomous entity.

Adjaoute stressed AI’s role as an effective tool, and the importance of understanding its basis in data and its limitations in replicating human intelligence. Still, he believes in the technology, and told PYMNTS’ Karen Webster it’s important to separate the hype from the reality in order to understand the promise and limitations of AI.

“AI does not have the ability to understand the way that humans understand,” he said. “It follows patterns. As humans, we look for patterns. For example, when I recognize the number 8, I don’t see two circles. I see one. I don’t need any extra power or cognition. That’s what AI is based on. It’s the recognition of algorithms, and that’s why they’re designed for specific tasks.”

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