Demand planning requires you to strike the balance between having sufficient stock levels to meet customer demands without having surplus. One way of ensuring this balance is through real time planning.
What is real time planning?
Real time planning (RTP) is the process of gathering your data without time delays. This makes analyzing and planning a real time decision process so activities can be communicated without delay. A demand planning platform should always run with RTP so you can pivot with unexpected disruptions easily.
In order to have functional real time planning you need to understand the following:
1. A strong IT infrastructure
In order for your data to flow between business functions and even between facilities, you need a strong network infrastructure. This means having your data working double time so that it can be automatically analyzed to create better streamlined processes. This equips you with the possibility of RTP because your data is at your fingertips.
2. Digital twins
The capability of having a virtual representation of your supply chain has been around for a while now. They create the predictive capability that RTP requires for predicting maintenance and modeling internal system processes that help you anticipate change.
When implementing RTP in your supply chain, documentation might be boring but it’s the cornerstone of setting out processes and managing stakeholders. Establishing the single source of truth early in the process of real time planning is best practice.
4. Industry 4.0 technology integration
Also, digital transformation is here to stay. Integration of industry 4.0 technologies helps you in every facet of your business. From the shop floor to the finance department, having integrated technology unlocks real time advantages and helps you plan for unprecedented disruptions or changes in the market.
By considering real time planning features when selecting a platform for demand planning, you’ll be able to improve your business accuracy, save time, and ensure better revenue figures. Effective demand planning platforms should assist supply chain managers with their role and also unify your business from the get go.
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