Data is an integral part of the demand planning cycle. But, the trickiness of collecting data comes mainly from pulling it from all the sources of data for demand planning as well as unifying the data. It’s why it’s important to take into consideration where your information is housed.
You may have acquired new facilities or expanded to new territories. You also might have different departments using different tools to house their information. It’s fair to say that your information is likely not unified in one system. But, it doesn’t mean that you’re stuck with siloed or disjointed data by department, facility, and/or function.
Multiple ERPs, CRM and PLM are common in global businesses. But what do each of these tools do? And what kind of information does each provide? But what do each of these tools do? And what kind of information does each provide?
Different sources of data for demand planning:
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)
ERP is an integrated management tool that maintains business processes in real time. They organize, collect, store, manage, and interpret data from many functions of a business. From quality assurance, interactive technology, new development and finance, ERP systems can house this and more. Also, using the information provided in this system, a business can track raw materials, orders, cash, production capacity, purchase orders and more. Then, the information found in this tool can be used as part of the demand planning process.
Customer Resource Management (CRM)
CRM is a business process that manages interactions with customers using data analysis. In other words, the CRM compiles communication information from a range of sources, email, telephone, website, and even social media. It allows businesses to learn about their target audience, retain customers, and drive sales growth. Leveraging the information in your CRM can help you develop your demand plan based on assumed conversions and sale KPIs.
Product Lifecycle Management (PLM)
PLM tools handle the information surrounding goods as they move through the stages of product life, introduction of raw materials, development of product, growth, maturity, stability and decline. It involves both the manufacturing of the goods and the marketing to consumers of it. The information in your PLM will help define strategies, detailed activities and resource mapping.
Finally, by moving to a cloud-based supply chain management system, you can interconnect these siloed data pools to create a data lake for your demand planning lifecycle. By plugging in multiple systems, you take your data from flat file to web API. In other words, you’re able to connect different apps together to sync up your information. This prevents manual processes, loss of information, and allows you to interconnect apps for modern and dynamic data gathering. Data management allows you to easily pull up information and become proactive rather than reactive to changes in your business environment.
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