TPC and Catalyst AI partner to bring AI to retail supply chain

06 December 2018

As the retail sector looks to find efficiency savings and improve results in a challenging period, the importance of an effective supply chain has been significantly enhanced. In order to help businesses improve on costs and customer service provision, specialist consultancies Thought Provoking Consulting and Catalyst AI have launched a new partnership focused on clients in the retail industry.

In line with most other industries, the supply chain sector is in the grip of a sustained period of change, as industry leaders wrestle with the concept of digital transformation in order to both streamline and secure their operational processes. This is completely pertinent for the traditional retail sector, which has suffered a borderline disastrous 2018, as increased import costs and geo-political friction has left many companies scrambling to find savings to balance the books.

With the opportunities to provide cheap, agile solutions and improve customer service via rapid deliveries and improved stock systems, AI can transform this situation, however. This was recently exemplified by Charles Tyrwhitt’s selection of retail consultancy Thought Provoking Consulting (TPC) to support with the design and implementation of a new sales and stock-planning software. The firm will help draft a roadmap for the changes, before assisting the clothing retailer with the change management process.TPC and Catalyst AI partner to bring AI to retail supply chain

Now, as the firm looks to help more clients in the sector improve their supply chains and find savings and improvements to operations, TPC has announced a partnership with AI consulting firm Catalyst AI. The partnership will enable TPC to enhance and extend its proprietary SMART tools through the adoption of a variety of relevant AI and Automation capabilities developed in partnership with Catalyst AI. Meanwhile, as a consultancy developing practical applications for AI in the business world, Catalyst AI will help TPC equip retailers with state of the art capabilities designed to make better and faster business decisions.

Subir Gupta, TPC Co-Founder and Managing Principal said, “We are excited to be partnering with Catalyst AI to bring the next generation of AI-enabled algorithmic retailing capabilities to market. Our data science enabled pricing, promotion and markdown management solutions have been delivering substantial benefits to retailers for many years… We aim to transform the decision making effectiveness of Merchandising and Supply Chain functions whilst simultaneously eliminating low value administrative tasks, enabling teams to focus more time on creative activities which deliver demonstrable bottom line results.”

Raymond Siems, Catalyst AI Co-Founder and CEO added, “The most effective partnerships bring together expertise across different domains and disciplines… Retail is ripe for innovation led by AI. The sector possesses a wealth of data, thanks to increasingly mature digitalisation efforts, and a wide range of interpretable external signals which can be intelligently harnessed to inform decision making processes that are difficult for firms to manage at scale.”


GE Healthcare helping Bradford Teaching Hospitals with AI project

19 April 2019

As the Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS trust continues to encounter heavy demand for beds and treatment, GE Healthcare has been working to help reduce the strain on the institution via a new AI-driven Command Centre. The Command Centre is hoped to decrease length of stay, alleviate the need for additional wards and beds and reduce cancellations for non-emergency surgery.

Facing unprecedented demand from the challenges presented by an ageing population and a shortfall in government spending, the NHS is at a cross-roads in its existence. In this environment, implementing time-saving, cost-cutting technological solutions has become crucial to the institution's future. This recently saw the NHS appoint nearly 80 consulting firms, IT consultancies, systems integrators, healthcare specialists and other professional services providers to its Health Systems Support (HSS) Framework.

Among those firms was GE Healthcare Partners, the health technology consulting wing of General Electric Company, an American multinational conglomerate incorporated in New York and headquartered in Boston. GE Healthcare is involved in transformation projects in national healthcare systems around the world, and recently received a ‘highly commended’ recognition at the 2019 MCA Awards for its work with the Dubai Health Authority towards transforming the local sector into a world-class hub for healthcare. Last year, the firm also won the ‘International’ award for its project with the Saudi Ministry of Health.

GE Healthcare helping Bradford Teaching Hospitals with AI project

In the UK, GE Healthcare has taken on a role collaborating with Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to build a Command Centre – like that of an air traffic control – at the Bradford Royal Infirmary (BRI). One of the first of its kind in Europe, the Command Centre will transform how care is delivered and organised as the number of patients at the hospital continues to increase. Utilising artificial intelligence (AI), it will provide a clear, instant, and real-time overview across the 800-bed hospital and help staff make quick and informed decisions on how to best manage patient care.

According to GE Healthcare’s website, up to 20 Trust staff based in the Command Centre will monitor a “wall of analytics” that constantly pulls in streams of real-time data from the multiple systems at the hospital. Advanced algorithms will help staff to anticipate and resolve bottlenecks in care delivery before they occur, recommending actions to enable faster, more responsive patient care and better allocation of resources. The data will be displayed on multiple high definition screens in the Command Centre – as well as on tablets and mobile devices, providing 24-7 support to busy medical teams across the hospital.

Over 96% of bed capacity at BRI is used regularly and it has 125,000 A&E (Emergency Department) attendances each year, up by more than 40% over the past decade. The Command Centre program will ideally help meet the vision of Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to decrease length of stay, alleviate the need for additional wards and beds, and reduce cancellations for non-emergency surgery.

Commenting on the changes, Professor Clive Kay, Chief Executive of Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said, "Demand for services is growing at Bradford Teaching Hospitals every year. The Command Centre will enable us to optimise our use of resources and improve how we move patients around the hospital for treatment and successful discharge. Around 350-400 patients come through our A&E every day, and relieving pressure on our 6,000 staff means they can spend more time delivering care, and less time organising care."

Set to open in Spring 2019, the Command Centre will be centrally located in a refurbished space at the BRI site. It will help to reduce unnecessary time spent in hospital after a patient is medically ready to leave, increase the proportion of patients who arrive and are admitted, transferred or discharged from A&E within four hours, and help ensure that patients are always treated in the wards best suited to manage their care.

Command Centres have been successfully deployed by several hospitals in North America, including The Johns Hopkins Hospital, a major not-for-profit 1,100 bed hospital in Baltimore. Since the John Hopkins Command Centre began operating, patients from other hospitals have been transferred 60% faster, Emergency Room wait times have been cut by 25%, and operating theatre wait times for post-surgical beds have decreased by 70%.

Jeff Terry, GE Healthcare’s Command Centre CEO, said of the initiative, “GE Healthcare’s vision is to enable precision health. We are honoured to serve the NHS Bradford team as they look to deliver the most effective patient care.”