Distributors and other businesses hold inventory worth about $2 trillion in the U.S., Andrew Winston writes. Drawing down that inventory through proper data management and planning could bring significant financial, space and environmental savings, he argues. "[D]ata and software can play a critical role in making operations more efficient and sustainable. ... All that production avoided saves a lot of money in manufacturing, distribution, and ongoing warehousing. It also saves a lot of carbon, material, and water," Winston writes.

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