Great management and deep analysis of a business’ supply chain is nothing new. But what is true is that sales and operations planning is more complex, involved and integrated than ever before. What’s it called? – integrated business planning.
Operations planning has evolved.
In short, traditional sales and operations planning was a way of keeping tabs and improving collaboration along the breadth of the supply chain – the journey involving all levels of the business and its suppliers to the effective and profitable distribution of a product or service.
In a way, integrated business planning is this process, but it has evolved. The aim is to take those efficiency and profitability gains and then an even bolder step forwards.
How does that happen? We analyse five steps to integrated business planning:
This happens at the level of your business, involving an understanding of how demand for your product affects the supply chain. In short, it means avoiding both supply shortages and overstocking, and then constantly monitoring and adjusting that demand plan from several angles in real time.
Next, it’s about perfecting that demand plan so that problems are anticipated before they can ever affect the consumer.
The collaboration step is where the active contribution of all of the stakeholders comes together: your own team, your suppliers and even your customers. Technology can play a big role here, including a platform like BOARD which can crystallise a vision of an organisation’s performance that can be easily acted upon.
The step after collaboration is putting all those pieces together, because great plans cannot be executed well unless every stakeholder throughout the supply chain can both buy into and enact the details. In short, it’s about pressing ‘go’ on that single vision across a machine with many moving parts, all operating according to a financial plan and on budget.
Finally, with the integrated business planning now in motion, the improvement phase is about constantly analysing, adapting and improving – because a plan isn’t everything and it certainly is never enough, especially when it involves organisations with multiple levels, functions and suppliers.
These are some of the basic steps towards integrated business planning, which is something Sensus Solutions can help your business with as well as data visualisation, business intelligence solutions and much more. Get in touch today to see how we can help.