Successful planning is a central part of every company. Accurate planning plays an essential role in that and contributes significantly to the strategic orientation of the company – and thus to its success. Due to trends such as digitalization in an increasingly networked world economy, it is becoming increasingly difficult for companies to successfully make plans for the future, predict developments, and derive according measures. The temporal aspect only adds to that. Up until now, the strategic goals have always been based on past-related data. However, in times of ever shorter production and planning cycles and rapid information transfer, concepts are required that integrate current events into comprehensive planning in a timely manner and enable well-founded derivations from them. As a result, planning cycles are shortening and the focus on strategic goals is blurring.
Such a complex task requires intelligent support such as the Oracle Sales and Operations Planning Cloud. This solution offers companies an integrated business application for implementing a company-wide strategy by uniting the individual departments in a uniform planning process. Through a continuously future-directed Sales Operations Planning (S&OP) process, products, demand, and delivery planning can be consolidated and adapted to financial and strategic goals. S&OP is designed in such a way that an integration into other Oracle applications and third-party systems runs effortlessly. Information can thus be transmitted in real time, so that planning always takes place with current data. Rising production costs, short-term fluctuations in demand or the opening of a new warehouse can be simulated using “what-if” scenarios. Global changes such as the Brexit or potential trade wars raise questions about the impact that is made on all supply chain processes as well as global business processes. With this intelligent planning solution, consequences can be determined in time and appropriate measures can be initiated. In the case of Brexit, it can be observed that companies have been stocking their warehouses with spare parts or have been acquiring new suppliers in the EU. At this point, the S&OP Cloud offers an opportunity to simulate precisely these situations and illustrate their effects.
In traditional sales and operations planning, the focus was mostly on matching supply and demand. With the S&OP Cloud, Oracle offers a modern software solution that supplements traditional S&O planning with numerous functions. This allows a regular monitoring of the product portfolio. Current demand forecasts ensure that sales targets are met, delivery schedules are created to meet the demand, and operational planning is compared against financial targets. The results achieved in planning can be passed directly to the operational level, thus bridging the gap between strategic planning and short-term operations.
Companies often fail to design an efficient planning process or rely exclusively on spreadsheets or software solutions that do not meet the company’s requirements. The Oracle S&OP Cloud can be implemented in a very short time and offers numerous best practice solutions. Using a configurable 5-step process, the company’s performance is broken down into product, demand, supply, financial and management reports. Each report contains standardized lists of tasks, decisions, and recommendations for action. These reports and evaluations result from many years of experience and can be implemented or adapted to the respective requirements in the shortest possible time.
Timely and well-founded planning – which unites all available information and thus creates plans showing the effects in different areas and with differentiated scenarios – is a requirement placed by global enterprises. For these tasks, the S&OP application from Oracle, which integrates current data into a plan and shows the according effects of it, is suitable. This illustration makes a fast derivation of mature measures possible.
Author: Marvin Grudzienski and Moritz Weise
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