We offer consulting services, data analysis, advanced analytics and decision support software in the following four main arenas:
- Demand Forecasting and Capacity Planning:
- Demand forecasting approach
- Capacity planning tools
- Customer Data Mining and Predictive Modeling:
- Unique data mining approach
- Customer data mining & modeling tools
- Health Risk Analysis:
- Approach and expertise
- Health risk analysis tools
- Network Optimization and Design:
- Network design expertise
- Network optimization tools, available through subsidiary NetAdvantage, Inc
OUR UNIQUE TECHNICAL APPROACH
In each business area, we apply the following five interrelated technical approaches:
- Classification Tree Demand Analysis
- How do your existing and potential customers behave?
- What are the logical groupings of these customers?
- Which groups have characteristics that make them the most profitable to you?
- How should you attract and keep their business?
- Computer Simulation Modeling
- What are the likely consequences of different management decisions or actions?
- For customer responses, competitor reactions, employee morale, costs and quality of service, engineering reliability and performance levels
- Quantitative Risk and Decision Analysis
- What decisions best balance competing goals and optimally trade-off risk against probable return?
- Example decisions: Technology choice, capacity planning, equipment replacement scheduling, new product design, multi-market marketing planning and product scheduling, allocation of resources across markets, products, and divisions.
- Risk Communication for Decision Support
- How can the causal relation between decisions and their likely consequences be clearly displayed, communicated, and updated to have high impact on real decision-making?
- Applied statistics
- How many network components will fail next year?
- How can failure costs be reduced?
- Do genetically modified grasses threaten the environment, or your lawn?
- How can construction defects be estimated from limited samples? when will copper pipes fail?
- Mathematical Optimization
- Which combination or sequence of actions gives the most favorable probability distribution of consequences
- Our network design optimization products use Linear and Integer Programming techniques which you may remember from Operations Research if you studied it. These problems all have the general form of:
- Minimize or Maximize some calculation (typically a cost calculation), while adhering to a number of constraints.
- The constraints are typically such things as limitations on cost, requirements to meet demand and limitations on the way a product (for example) can be produced
- A good linear programming model can choose the optimal solution from among the literally millions of possible choices. The only downside is that the solution can frequently take a very long time, even on the fastest computer if the problem is complex. For this reason we’ve developed a number of heuristic techniques which find near-optimal (or, frequently, optimal) solutions in much less time. One of these approaches is described in our article on Backhaul Network Optimization, which we invite you to read.
In summary, Cox Associates develops and applies decision support software systems that provide intuitive, graphical interfaces and displays that help real decision-makers make better (more confident, more timely, and more effective) decisions.
The steps of classification tree analysis, simulation modeling, decision analysis, optimization of decisions or processes, and effective communication / presentation of results, reinforce each other and help our clients to achieve measurable improvements in their operations and in high-stakes business and engineering decisions.