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View And Adjust Your Supply Plan On A Tablet: Web-Based Planning and Customer Collaboration with SAP Integrated Business Planning

Up until recently, the front-end for planning in SAP IBP has been Excel. With the web-based planning app that we released earlier this year, sales representatives can prepare final adjustments on the go and now also collaborate with their customers or suppliers to easily digest information and/or add inputs in real-time through the web user interface (UI), using a tablet.

Find out more in my video with Pramod Mane, Senior Director, Product Management, SAP Integrated Business Planning. We are discussing functional highlights, latest enhancements and a customer collaboration use case:

Historically, organizations have followed a vertically integrated or a linear supply chain model to deliver goods or services. They owned the processes of raw material sourcing, manufacturing, distribution, sales, and marketing, with the entire supply chain falling under their direct control.

However, supply chains have become more complex due to globalization, expanded consumer channels, geo-political risks and regulations. In addition, organizations have also shifted their focus to their true core-competencies. This has resulted in decentralized supply chains sometimes involving dozens of companies, all playing different roles in the demand/supply function. As a result, the traditional linear supply chain model is being transformed into a value network extending beyond the four-walls of enterprise.

To overcome these complexities of today’s supply chain challenges, organizations need to collaboratively plan, monitor, execute, and measure with all participants in the value network and create a true win-win, whether that is with customers, suppliers or with internal organizations. The ability to effectively collaborate within and with business partners now determines a company’s success and growth potential.

This means enabling:

  1. Intra-Enterprise collaboration i.e. within supply chain and between other business functions
  2. Inter-Enterprise collaboration with strategic business partners

SAP Integrated Business Planning enables inter-enterprise and intra-enterprise collaboration via the web-based planning UI.

The application is a browser-based planning user interface supported on computers and tablets.

From a functional highlights perspective the web-based planning UI supports occasional internal users for e.g. sales representatives at customer sites with basic planning tasks such as gathering forecast inputs on a tablet or a PC. In addition, it also supports the collaboration with your external business partners (customers and suppliers), e.g. the customer-side forecast collaboration and the supplier-side forecast-commit process.

With web-based planning, a manufacturer who is an IBP system owner can directly work with the customer to reach an accurate consensus demand plan that can then be executed with confidence. The manufacturer and customer can define a collaboration agreement to share and collaborate on forecasts, promotional plans and any other market intelligence data in a secured manner. The manufacturer can then arrive at a consensus demand plan and confidently commit to fulfilling the demand. As a result, both manufacturers and customers benefit from improved forecasts, better customer service and reduced working capital.

In this forecast collaboration business scenario, the customer directly logs-on to SAP IBP and enters data in a secured manner using the dedicated web-based planning UI for customers. In analogy, suppliers also have their own UI:

Find out more:

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