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Demand Planning, Forecasting and S&OP

  • Directing Success

    Make S&OP the star with a 10-point plan
    • Eric J. Tinker
    January/February 2015

    Whether you are embarking on a sales and operations planning (S&OP) project or have an established process, it needs the support, guidance, and visibility that comes with a designated executive sponsor. ......Read More

  • Building Success

    How to put together an excellent executive meeting
    • Jenny Schneider
    September/October 2014

    In my first “Sales and Operations Planning” (S&OP) department in APICS magazine, I outlined a general S&OP process used by many companies: new demand stream, demand, supply, partnership meeting, and executive meeting. ......Read More

  • Build to Suit

    Selecting an ERP solution that fits your business
    • Dave Turbide
    September/October 2014

    Enterprise resources planning (ERP) is not what it was 10 years ago, or even two years ago. The broad-based application suite that we call ERP is merely the current incarnation of a long line of offerings that date back to inventory management and bill of material software programs first developed over half a century ago.......Read More

  • All Geared Up

    Will your business benefit from the many uses of vertical integration?
    • Ron Emery
    September/October 2014

    In order to simplify their supply chains and reduce risk, many organizations are choosing the path of vertical integration. However, the trade-offs sometimes are substantial.......Read More

  • Portion Control

    Reducing safety stock with a purchased-parts supermarket
    • Thomas Parker
    • Chris Harris
    September/October 2014

    Controlling the quantity and availability of inventory within a production system is one of the greatest challenges faced by supply chain and operations management professionals. One effective system to help manage this task is a centralized storage location for manufacturing components—a purchased-parts supermarket. ......Read More

  • Sprucing Up S&OP

    Kaizen brings a shiny new process
    • Jenny Schneider
    July/August 2014

    In the last edition of this department, we discussed determining if your sales and operations planning (S&OP) needs a revamp, reawakening, or reboot. Now, it’s time to use kaizen to make the desired improvements, keeping in mind that even successful processes can move to the next level with some simple strategies.......Read More

  • It’s Complicated

    Don’t let simple mistakes bleed profits
    • Ron Crabtree
    July/August 2014

    Complex manufacturers are under increasing pressure to cut lead times, increase innovation, and enable greater customization—all at a lower price than ever before. There is a lot at stake. Improving the competitiveness of complex manufacturing firms has a direct impact on almost every industry. ......Read More

  • Flying High

    Techniques and benchmarks to elevate your sales and operations planning team
    • Stephen T. Desirey
    July/August 2014

    There is no surefire way to transform a diverse group into a high-performing team. However, one generally accepted rule is that successful groups interact and function together seamlessly.......Read More

  • Seeing Your S&OP

    Are you blind to its flaws and failings?
    • Jenny Schneider
    May/June 2014

    If you are wondering if your sales and operations planning (S&OP) process needs a revamp or reawakening, you might consider performing one of the hundreds of S&OP effectiveness checklists out there. They are good tools, but only truly helpful if the S&OP manager has assistance from someone outside the team who has managed or thoroughly experienced a functioning S&OP process.......Read More

  • Optimum Performance

    Racing toward the perfect order
    • John McPhee
    March/April 2014

    In the world of supply chain management, three overarching metrics drive business performance: inventory, cost, and service. These concepts are in a state of perpetual pressure as functional teams vie for limited resources, pursuing targets that often are at odds with one another. ......Read More

  • Planning for Precision

    Strategies for a more perfect forecast
    • Jonathan Thatcher
    March/April 2014

    There are issues to consider with forecasting practice and material requirements planning (MRP) system configurations. First, don’t schedule production based on the greater of the forecast or sales orders. Instead, make sure orders consume the forecast as they come in. ......Read More

  • There’s No “I” in S&OP

    Why it’s time for inventory to join the process
    • Jenny Schneider
    March/April 2014

    Perhaps you have noticed that my professional title refers to “sales, inventory, and operations planning” (SIOP) rather than “sales and operations planning” (S&OP). I have been asked about this by some readers, so I now will clarify my understanding of SIOP.......Read More

  • Measuring Up

    Why metrics are essential to advancing S&OP
    • Jenny Schneider
    January/February 2014

    Monitoring the status and effects of improvement activities is very important to the success of sales and operations planning (S&OP). One way to define and measure progress toward both short- and long-term goals is via key performance indicators (KPIs). ......Read More

  • The Race for Style

    Evaluating the breakneck speed of Zara’s integrated supply chain
    • Richard E. Crandall
    January/February 2014

    Zara, a division of Inditex, has become a worldwide success in the high-fashion clothing business and an example of one of the top supply chains in the world. The credit for this success often is attributed to the company’s highly integrated, quickly responsive network. ......Read More

  • Tip the Scales

    Striking the right balance of supply chain management elements
    • Vadim Kapustin
    January/February 2014

    Sadly, few professionals realize that the six key supply chain elements—cost, capacity, inventory, lead time, Customer Relations level, and product portfolio complexity—are inextricably intertwined. As such, they should be managed as pieces of a whole.......Read More

  • The Power of Demand Shaping

    The electricity industry provides an illuminating view
    • Richard E. Crandall
    November/December 2013

    Demand management might strike you as an oxymoron. How can demand be managed? Most managers understand the concept of controlling the supply side, but demand often is a different animal. ......Read More

  • Slanted Thinking

    Overcome the mental biases that weaken your forecasts
    • Jonathan Thatcher
    November/December 2013

    Qualitative analysis attempts to address the issue of the ever-uncertain forecast. However, The danger of qualitative analysis is that it opens the door to cognitive bias. ......Read More

  • Getting Tough with S&OP

    Six rules that should never be broken
    • Jenny Schneider
    November/December 2013

    You cannot just implement S&OP, clap your hands, and assume the process is going to be effective. It is important to establish clear rules that everyone understands, knows, and follows. ......Read More

  • The Other Side of the Equation

    Shaping demand to meet company goals
    • Dave Turbide
    September/October 2013

    We supply chain and operations management professionals tend to think of demand as a given. It’s common to manipulate supply to meet demand—but this does not have to be a one-way process. It’s also possible to shape demand to better fit supply. ......Read More

  • Lean and Agile

    Achieving peak levels of sales and operations planning
    • Salim Shaikh
    • Ehap Sabri
    September/October 2013

    S&OP first and foremost must be both lean and agile. Lean and agile S&OP is a company’s single-most-important competitive weapon for ensuring that customers are being profitably served through the right channels and with the right product mix. ......Read More