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Which supply chain planning processes should we automate?

ToolsGroup

Now that more companies are embracing supply chain planning productivity and automation, many firms are asking which processes they should automate. Let's first address that question and then look at where this trend is heading in the future.

Demand Planning Apps Top Supply Chain Planning Machine Learning

ToolsGroup

Source: Gartner 2018. Gartner recently polled both users and vendors on which supply chain planning (SCP) applications are employing machine learning and in three different analysis, demand planning and demand forecasting came out top of the list.

How Procter & Gamble is thriving on supply chain complexity

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Source: Gartner Supply Chain Executive Conference. Procter & Gamble (P&G) is known for best-in-class supply chain planning.

Another Way to Think About Supply Chain Risk Management

ToolsGroup

In a previous blog we described a new concept introduced by Gartner Research about the need for both macro-agility and micro-agility. Now we apply this same macro-agility and micro-agility concept to risk management.

How ClearMetal Customers Stay a Day Ahead of the Competition

Every shipper in the world receives alerts that their shipment arrived at port 1.5 days after it actually happened. ClearMetal customers get alerted 31 hours earlier. Learn how ClearMetal is giving their customers a competitive advantage nobody else can.

The Three “Habits” for Successful IoT Implementations

ToolsGroup

Editor’s note: Due to the upcoming holidays, this will be our last blog for 2018. The next posting will be on January 8 th , 2019.

Mid-market companies leapfrogging supply chain planning maturity stages

ToolsGroup

Is the latest technology enabling some mid-market companies to leapfrog supply chain planning (SCP) stages of maturity? The evidence suggests that it is. Publicly, analysts are still cautioning mid-market companies not to aim too high.

Gartner Questions Supply Chain “Control Towers”

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Gartner says that future supply chain planning will look less like a "control tower" and more like a refinery "control room'" with many value-added analytics that automate, guide and control the supply chain.

Supply Chain Planning for Direct-To-Consumer

ToolsGroup

Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) presents special supply chain planning challenges for both smaller microbrands (e.g., eyeglass brand Warby Parker or mattress seller Casper) and much larger consumer goods incumbents, but the planning challenges are different depending on which type of company you are.

"Recreating the environment in which historical demand occurred"

ToolsGroup

Editor's Note: Starting today we will begin publishing this blog once every two weeks.

Taking S&OP to the next level with supply chain analytics

Many supply chain leaders realize the potential of analytics but need to see concrete examples. With our 30-year heritage in advanced analytics and our experience with Fortune 500 and mid-size companies, we have plenty of those to share. Sales and operations planning (S&OP) tools are increasingly being adopted by companies and while they enable data visualization and collaboration, they often miss the intelligence to recommend actions that improve your EBITDA. Find out how our self-configurable S&OP solution can help you take S&OP to the next level. This webinar covers: How to get more insights from your S&OP using analytics. How to get more "signals" to identify opportunities and risks which weren't traditionally visible. How to spend less time on data gathering, more time on reflection and discussion. How S&OP coupled with analytics will help you make better decisions than your competition.

Can S&OP become more continuous? Automation is key.

ToolsGroup

Sales and Operations Planning (S&OP), a process often focused around a monthly meeting, is evolving into a more continuous process. A recent whitepaper by supply chain planning and optimization firm Optilon explains why and how.

S&OP 208

The Nine Top Supply Chain Planning User Concerns

ToolsGroup

Gartner’s most recent Magic Quadrant for Supply Chain Planning System of Record (21 August 2018, Amber Salley, Tim Payne, and Alex Pradha) calls out the concerns most often cited by users.

Design, Operating and Situational Inventory Trade-Offs

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Gartner analyst Paul Lord has developed a framework to better understand inventory trade-offs by categorizing those decisions according to the objectives they are meant to achieve: structural, operational and situational.

Probabilistic Forecasting - a Primer

ToolsGroup

An experienced gambler might hedge their bet on multiple outcomes, rather than just the most likely "single number forecast". At ToolsGroup we have been big advocates of probabilistic forecasting (sometimes also known as stochastic forecasting).

Your Data Has Value. Learn How Technology Can Unlock It.

Supply chain data is flawed, we all know this. Hear ClearMetal CEO, Adam Compain, talk about how the right technology and strategies will give you better visibility and create value within your supply chain. The ability to move from reactive firefighting to proactive planning is closer than you think.

Gartner’s Top Ten User-Rated Supply Chain Planning Capabilities

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Gartner Research recently released its new Magic Quadrant for Supply Chain Planning System of Record (SCP SOR) in which 485 user companies identified their top ten rated planning capabilities for delivering SCP goals.

Overcoming a shortage of supply chain talent

ToolsGroup

Editor’s note: There will be no blog post next week due to summer holidays. There is a shortage of supply chain talent. Supply Chain Insights reports that more than half of all companies are seeing an increase in employee turnover and experiencing unfilled job openings.

Decoding the language of S&OP

ToolsGroup

Since demand forecasting has developed many “personalities” over the decades, I recently wrote a blog that “decoded” the language of demand.

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What’s Your Forecast Accuracy Target for 2019?

ToolsGroup

Editor’s Note: Two years ago we posted a blog about how to set an annual forecast accuracy target and it was one of our most popular topics. As we approach that time of year again, we decided to run an updated version. Many companies have already started their 2019 planning and budgeting cycles, so if you are in charge of demand forecasting for your company, it’s about time to thinking about your organization's 2019 goals.

Get more “aha” moments in your S&OP Meetings

If you aren't running a well-oiled Sales & Operations Planning process with the added benefit of sophisticated supply chain analytics & optimization - you are probably leaving major revenue and margin opportunities on the table. S&OP has become a standard process to improve business performance, collaboration and predictability. Ready to take things to the next level? This Guide offers insights into where commonly used technologies fall short, and what you should look for to get more value from S&OP using analytics. Download the buyer’s guide for S&OP.

Why probabilistic forecasting is better for inventory optimization

ToolsGroup

Editor's Note: There will be no blog next week due to the US Thanksgiving holiday. Last month we published a primer on probabilistic forecasting , an alternative to deterministic or ‘single number’ forecasting.

Four ways Inventory Optimization can address tighter supply constraints

ToolsGroup

As the (U.S.) economic expansion enters its ninth year, supply constraints are showing up in supply chains.

Balancing service levels and supply chain costs

ToolsGroup

Precisely balancing the tradeoff for each inventory item is a hallmark of inventory optimization. Editor’s Note: Last year ToolsGroup became Microsoft’s partner for Multi-echelon Inventory Optimization (MEIO) in Industrial accounts.

Still managing your inventory with spreadsheets?

ToolsGroup

Most companies are still trying to use Excel to optimize their inventories. Supply Chain Insights’ 2018 Inventory Optimization Technologies Study suggests the number may be as high as 75%.

The 4 Stages of Supply Chain Analytics

How do you move from “what happened” to “what would happen if”? Most supply chains struggle with the first, and the latter is wishful thinking. What stage are you in? Find out where your supply chain is on the maturity curve.

Want to disrupt your supply chain? Check out this new analytical tool

ToolsGroup

Brad Householder, Founder and CEO of b2i, spoke at the ToolsGroup TG18 user conference recently and presented an innovative approach to strategically analyze your value chain to focus digital investments. Brad, by the way, comes from a great pedigree.

Tools 224

Why the Forecast for Supply Chain Planning has been Only Partly Cloudy

ToolsGroup

Cloud-based supply chain planning is gaining traction. Each year more users opt for cloud-based systems and there is a lot of support in the analyst community.

Three Mega Trends Driving Gartner Stage 5 Supply Chain Planning

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Gartner says that clients are increasingly asking, “What will the future of supply chain planning look like?” and in a recent report ( Technology Reference Model for Stage 5 Maturity Supply Chain Planning, June 2018 ) they see three “mega trends” driving that vision.

How Not to use Machine Learning for Demand Forecasting

ToolsGroup

Eight years ago ToolsGroup was one of the first supply chain planning software vendors to employ machine learning to improve demand forecasting. As the tag line to a popular commercial goes, by now “we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two.”.

Real time analytics for your S&OP Meetings?

If you aren't running a well-oiled Sales & Operations Planning process with the added benefit of sophisticated supply chain analytics & optimization - you are probably leaving major revenue and margin opportunities on the table. S&OP has become a standard process to improve business performance, collaboration and predictability. Ready to take things to the next level? This Guide offers insights into where commonly used technologies fall short, and what you should look for to get more value from S&OP using analytics.

Decoding the Language of Demand

ToolsGroup

If you’ve been in supply chain for any length time, you might be wondering what caused demand forecasting to develop so many different ‘personalities’ over the years. Demand forecasting, planning, sensing, shaping…what’s going on?

Segmenting Your Inventory by Gross Margin and Demand Variability

ToolsGroup

Source: Gartner Research. Gartner Research analyst Paul Lord has developed a thought-provoking approach (shown in the above diagram) for tailoring supply and inventory tactics to different inventory segments.

“Digital Transformation” and Supply Chain Planning

ToolsGroup

Here is the scenario. The C Suite says it wants “digital transformation". Your company has an older supply chain planning (SCP) system of record (SOR) like SAP APO that was developed in the 1990s.

What’s Your Forecast Accuracy Target for 2017?

ToolsGroup

Editor's Note: Due to the Thanksgiving holiday, there will be no blog post next week. In 2016, it seemed as if everyone in supply chain was looking to improve their forecasting performance.

The 2018 Supply Chain Software Buyer's Guide

Learn which supply chain applications are the best for your organization.