Design of an intelligent supplier knowledge management system - An integrative approach

King Lun Tommy Choy, K. H. Tan, Tung Sun Chan

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


The drive to cut costs continually and focus on core competencies has driven many companies to outsource some or all of their production. Unlike the past, companies can no longer concentrate only on their own internal business operations, but have to work with customers and suppliers effectively and efficiently. The integration of customer demand and supplier capability to facilitate supplier management using data mining and artificial intelligence technologies has become a promising solution for outsourced-type companies in outsourcing manufacturing operations to suitable suppliers. The result is to form a supply network on which they depend on the provision of products and services. In this paper, a supplier knowledge management system (SKMS) is introduced for such a purpose. By using its hybrid on-line analytical processing (OLAP)/artificial neural networks (ANNs)/case-based reasoning (CBR) approach in predicting future customer demands and allocating suitable suppliers during the order fulfilment process, it is found that the overall efficiency in the whole supply chain is greatly enhanced. A case study using the SKMS to integrate the order subcontracting system of Farnell Newark-InOne (Shanghai) Limited is presented. Through the use of the SKMS, the demand of customers is related to the supplier's capabilities both efficiently and effectively while, at the same time, valuable supplier knowledge is also accumulated by the company.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-211
Number of pages17
JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part B: Journal of Engineering Manufacture
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jul 2007


  • Artificial neural networks
  • Case-based reasoning
  • On-line analytical processing
  • Supplier and knowledge management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

Cite this