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Author's profile photo Lothar Volker Wilhelm

Be Responsive – the agility to meet real customer demands in the short term

What happen, if your supply chain planning is cutting edge, but your are still not able to quickly and efficiently react to changes in demand and supply or to ensure resources are prioritized to meet business needs.

No doubt, changing consumer demand, supply and economic uncertainty are key challenges in business. Being intimate with customers to understand them to the point of predicting  their needs is crucial for success.

Demand Driven Business Planning, where ‘Multi Dimensional planning’ prepares a flexible supply chain based on expected customer and market forecast across time horizons, operations and finance. However plans are only a start, and industry benchmarks have forecast accuracies typically <70% (depending how measured), therefore Demand Networks need the agility to adapt to real customer and market demands in the shorter term.

The challenges of operating a global supply chain in a world of increasing demand volatility, channels and complex supply networks are on the increase. Success depends on the ability to plan in faster cycles and re-plan supply across the network quickly and responsively. An increasing supply chain strategy is to not only improve the planning over longer time horizons, but also mitigate inevitable exceptions and volatility through fast and intelligent response and supply orchestration. The focus is in the shorter time horizon, and enabling a real time data driven supply chain.

SAP offers end-to-end solutions enabling advanced business processes for  Response and Supply Orchestration, with proven business value like reduced lead time and improved service levels at lower cost,  enabling higher quote / order conversion rate, as well as reduced stocks levels and work in progress.

  • Response and Supply Management
    SAP Solutions in Response and Supply Management enable companies to re-plan supply, and match supply to demand across the network quickly and responsively. Including the ability to prioritise different demand streams and customers in constrained Omni-channel supply chains
  • Production Planning and Scheduling
    With SAP customers can integrate  planning with scheduling and execution having a consistent view on inventory, capacity, and product data. Schedule resources optimally considering finite capacity and material availability constraints. Gain real time visibility into production and resource status available for alerts and responsive rescheduling.
  • Response Network
    SAP Solutions provide an end-to-end cloud-based offering helping companies to connect with their partners effectively through a shared Network. Companies can engage in innovative joint supply chain initiatives to improve service levels, cycle times and reduce inventories.

The bottom line? Supply chains need to be differentiated and offer increasingly high service levels, yet cost is still critical and  it is not competitive to carry excessive inventory, lead time and capacity buffers to protect all risks and exceptions. To manage risk fast responsive agility is needed.


Because every second counts and that is true for Supply Chain, too

See you, Volker Wilhelm

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      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      One more piece of the puzzle to build an agile supply chain is demand sensing.  SAP offers Integrated Business Planning for demand to meet this need of tuning short term forecasts based on orders and other activity.  This is compatible with APO DP (Demand Planning). Take a look over here on SCN, for more information about IBP for demand.