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Customer Business Planning (CBP) is a key component of the SAP TM 3.0 solution and fills an important whitespace that enables CPG companies to run an integrated, seamless trade program that goes beyond individual promotion planning.

In this blog I am explaining some important points that should be taken into consideration while planning or monitoring a CBP plan.

Data source for the CBP Plan:

The data that is displayed on the CBP planning screen is displayed from the BW-IP DSO (Data Store Object) /JBPB/ILOTE. Similarly when the user makes any change to the planned values, the data is saved directly back to the same DSO /JBPB/ILOTE. This data is not locally saved in SAP CRM.

Though the data can be displayed in either weekly view or a monthly view on the CBP screen, the data is stored to the lowest granularity of a week in the DSO.

The DSO /JBPB/ILOTE contains separate sets of data stored with different source indicators, as follows:

Source Indicator Meaning
1 Latest Estimate (Current Operational version)
2 Plan Data
3 Reference data
5 Previous Year Data
A, B, C Scenarios (as planned from scenario planning)

Timing and Impact of Actualization:

The operational view of the CBP plan is linked with the source indicator 1 (Latest Estimate).  The latest estimate is basically a combination of two types of data:

  • Actual Data for the past weeks
  • Planned Data for the future weeks

e.g.

A user has planned data for the planning year 2018.

Latest Estimate Data at the beginning of the year will be shown as follows:

 

Total Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 52
Sell-in Volume 60000 1000 1200 1200 1000 1000
Trade Spends 60 5 5 5 5 …. 5

During week 4, when the user reviews the plan view, the data for the week 1 to week 3 will be replaced by the actual data e.g. Sell-in volume can be extracted from ECC shipments and loaded into /JBPB/ILOTE. Similarly the trade spend data can be derived based on accrued or settled trade expenses.

As an example, latest Estimate Data at during week 4 will be shown as follows:

           <—-     Actualized Data Planned Data —>
Total Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 52
Sell-in Volume 59500 800 1300 1000 1000 1000
Trade Spends 58 3 6 4 5 …. 5

It is important to note a few points in this regard:

  • The actuals data (volume or trade spend) should be regularly loaded into BW; otherwise the plan will not show the correct picture at all times. Ideally the data should be loaded at least once, at the end of each week; since actualization happens by weeks. If accruals are used as a source of actuals, then the accrual jobs should be run with at least the same frequency.

 

  • For the current week (e.g. week 4); even if any shipments have taken place or any trade spend accruals / claims are posted, this data will not be reflected in the CBP plan. The data for the current as well as future week shows only the planned values.

 

  • The planned values for the future period is not reduced by the actualization. E.g. A trade promotion is ongoing and is planned for the next X weeks with planned trade spends that are . expected to incur over a time. This planned spend data will appear on CBP screen for teh future weeks. If a claim is settled for this promotion earlier than expected (for some reason), then the planned spends for the future period are not reduced.

 

Short and Long Term Planning:

The future planning period can be divided into short-term & long term. This period can be defined in the CBP configuration in terms of months.

SAP CRM IMG: Customer Relationship management -> Trade Management -> Customer Business Planning -> Basic Settings -> Planning Period -> Define Short Term Period

The draft promotions are considered in the planning only outside the short term period. This is because draft promotions are always considered as high level (rough cut) planning and a short term planning window must have detailed level of planning.

SAP TM 3.0 includes a feature to raise an “alert” if the draft promotion execution start date is less than the short term period plus X days , which can be configured as follows:.

SAP CRM IMG: Customer Relationship management -> Trade Management -> General Settings -> Alerts -> Specify Duration Before Short Term Period

This alert serves as a reminder to the user to convert the draft promotions in time.

Versioning:

The users can take a snapshot of the plan (alongwith actualized data) at any point of time by creating a version. There is no technical limitation on the number of versions that a user can create. This versioning data created this way is stored in the DSO /JBPB/IVERSA with source indicator 9.

The user can create a version manually from the CBP planning screen. Alternatively a background process can be set-up to create a version at a predefined interval (e.g. at every end of a month.)

User can compare any two versions at a time from the CBP screen.

Summary:

Customer Business Planning is a great tool which helps a user to plan, simulate and monitor the business plan with a particular retailer. To make an effective use of it, it must be kept updated with latest data. Hence the following points should be considered:

  1. Loading the actualization data into BW with correct frequency
  2. Running accrual jobs at correct intervals, if accruals are going to be used as source of actuals
  3. Converting draft promotions into detailed promotions in advance of short term planning window
  4. Taking snapshots of the plan at the required interval, so that proper analysis can be done by comparing the progress
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