Test Your Power of Deduction: Finding the right solution to align supply and demand

Posted by Victoria Menshchikova on September 11, 2014

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Supply chains are becoming increasingly more complex and more central in driving business results. They have transformed from chains to interconnected networks requiring much more fluid and dynamic processes. Balancing supply and demand and getting the forecast right has real impact on the performance of the business. This process requires powerful technologies to effectively manage and leverage the big data volumes now available from structured and unstructured sources. How can an IT professional help choose the right solution that helps unify sales, operations, finance, marketing and supply chain through technology? This infographic will help. Put on your Sherlock hat and start searching.

STEP 1: Observe your surroundings

Ask your users what problems are most pressing, what objectives are they trying to solve with the new technology? If your sales and operations team spends most of their time assembling data points from large sets of spreadsheets and various systems than planning, the accuracy of their forecast may suffer. Some common challenges are inability to create “one view” forecast with sales teams spread worldwide, inaccurate forecast due to missing data, delays, and lack of modeling capabilities. These can lead to lost market share, inventory shortages or surplus.

STEP 2: Gather Your Facts

How can you help the sales and operations team to access supply chain data in real time, giving visibility into planned and actual demand information across different product lines, with the support of “what-if” scenario modeling and collaboration capabilities to arrive at the holistic forecast? These capabilities would help:

Balance supply and demand

Greatly reduce dependency on inventory

Integrate financial and operational planning

Link high-level strategic plans with day-to-day operations

In fact, according to IDC study[1], companies that run successful S&OP processes claimed up to 20% inventory reduction, up to 25% faster time to market and were able to gain up to 5% more revenue.

STEP 3: Draw Your Conclusion

Give SAP Sales and Operations planning powered by HANA a try. This cloud-based solution enables real-time planning and calculations on the fly to handle billions of total planning points. Your Sales and Operations team will be able to collaborate and orchestrate the S&OP process by manipulating big data from all areas of your business, collaborating across company boundaries, and do it real time to increase the speed of your decision making processes through rapid analytics and simulation capabilities. Start your trial today.

[1] IDC Research, Modern S&OP in Consumer Products

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