By Paul Martyn, Forbes Contributor | December 15, 2015

From plummeting fuel prices to disastrous disruptions, 2015 was an action-packed year across the global supply chain. But it’s time to move on. What about 2016? In the spirit of “everybody has one,” I reached out to a number of our industry’s thought leaders, anxious for their opinions and unwilling to let them off the hook without at least one solid prediction. I deliberately stayed away from listing the popular trends and have limited the following summary to the not-so-obvious:

1) The Use of Predictive Analytics, Planning Tools and Machine-Learning will Skyrocket.

“In 2016 we will see that bigger data doesn’t make us smarter unless we couple the intelligence with problem-specific techniques that enable effective decision making,” said Jim Wetekamp, CEO of BravoSolution, a global procurement provider. “Many people are still telling us that having all the data in one place is the goal. In reality, it’s just a step in the journey.”

Advanced analytics and machine learning technologies that can simulate supply chain scenarios, predict outcomes and make recommendations are transformative. The applications of predictive analytics are nearly endless, from deciding where and how to source raw materials to managing supply risk and optimizing production and logistics…

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