From Excel to State-of-art Demand Planning Solution

From Excel to DSCP Blog Article

Project success!! I have just completed a new demand planning project.  As I reflect on the before and after, I am truly amazed how far our customer has come in such a short period.  Looking at where they started and how they implemented the solution to make positive changes really illustrates all the growth they achieved.

Before the project, they were using Excel to forecast and plan their business.  They have over 60,000 items manufactured at many sites across the world and serve several thousand customers.  Now with their Demand Planning solution, three demand planners can calculate and review a new forecast in minutes. During Sales & Operations Planning (S&OP) they collaborate with sales, marketing, and their customers at a business level that has meaning to them and provide a consensus forecast built from the bottom up to review with management.

With Excel, it was much more complex and lengthy.  They would pull massive files from their database and create large calculations and huge pivot tables just to get a high-level forecast. Depending on the business level, changes to the forecast could be very time-consuming. Once the forecast was agreed upon, the forecast was broken down by manufacturing site and item using historical sales as a percent of the contribution.  Items trending up or down were not managed fully.  New items or items removed from assortment were not weighted correctly.

This led to low forecast accuracy at the manufacturing site with limited root cause analysis metrics to review business and adjust for the future.

Now with QAD Dynasys DSCP, the demand planners can review business results at different levels of their business and take action with easy to use root cause analysis metrics.  Items are automatically broken into classifications so demand planners can work by exception, make adjustments, and calculate a forecast in minutes.  During the collaboration phase of the S&OP cycle, all the stakeholders have easy access to reporting and analytics through the web portal feature and the demand planner has the analytics to support all forecast variations.  If there’s a decision to change the forecast, updating the forecast is quick, easy, and done in real-time.

Since their go-live a few months ago, I enjoy the partnership and conversations with the planning team every month.  Their forecast accuracy is improving; the sales teams are becoming more involved in the forecast details and the supply teams are becoming more engaged.  It has been fun to watch.

If you are using excel to forecast your business or are looking for an upgrade to a user-friendly, quick to install application to evolve your forecasting abilities.  Let QAD Dynasys help you create your own success story.

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