How to enhance S&OP/IBP with Technology

EPISODE 2 – What technology you need to support your S&OP process
Operations planning is evolving. Next to robust processes and capable people, to guarantee a successful plan it needs to be integrated, intelligent & agile, and supported by ever-advancing technology.

Leveraging these three main pillars will bring huge benefits to your company:

  • Integrated Business Planning: the coordination of all key departments in generating the plan is key to ensure efficient and effective plans supporting the company’s strategic goals. To be successful it requires a unified approach, able to integrate all the customer requirements, man, machine, and materials capacity, within the company’s boundaries of working capital investments.
  • Intelligent & Agile Planning: agile planning can have a major impact in factory operations and manufacturing process resilience to changing customer needs. Real Intelligent Planning will leverage the greater visibility across the entire value chain to support faster and more effective decision-making, adapting to fluctuating market and supply scenarios.
  • Technology: with the need to integrate the big data coming from the various functions, the market, along with customer and supplier collaboration, today’s IBP or S&OP professionals need to be supported by robust and smart technology. It becomes strategic for the companies to invest in technologies  for their supply chain transformation, to keep the process smooth and optimised and stay resilient in this rapidly changing world of business.

S&OP & Technology

As just explained, technology positively impacts S&OP. Let’s now have a look at the main tech areas that today can strongly improve the outcome of business planning:

Real-time data and Visual Management

Take advantage of a network in which all suppliers, contract manufactures, service providers and other partners collaborate and pivot together to seamlessly deliver on customer expectations.

Big Data, Analytics and KPI control

Monitor your performance to continuously improve the supply chain plan. Strong analytics is used to continuously improve your S&OP process, e.g. to improve assessment of your capacity and purchased materials needs, sophisticated dynamic predictive analytics, as well as scenario planning and optimisation.

Cloud technology, native integration, and Internet of Things (IOT)

Make your supply chain system future-proof. By connecting and integrating supply chain processes, data, people and machines, businesses can sense demand, understand what customers want, learn and improve, and deliver the right products and services at the right time.

Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence

To stay competitive in the market, companies need advanced planning system with optimisation techniques and machine learning algorithms to improve the forecasting techniques, the replenishment strategies, the inventory optimisation and financial reconciliation. Such technologies help in optimizing the entire supply chain, enabling flexibility to adapt to the volatility of the market and to allocate human resources on more value-added tasks (e.g. scenario design, decision making, etc.).

Scenario Planning

With automated planning systems, it becomes easier to elaborate “what-if” scenarios for to cope with uncertainty and disruptions in supply and demand.  The systems allow planners to react swiftly if the data suggest a drift toward a scenario and gain a competitive advantage.

D-ONE Intelligent Planning

It’s time to bring your production planning to the next level. But where to start? Start with us!

d-one is our intelligent planning platform, with integrated sales and capacity planning (man, machine, material), embedded forecasting and planning optimizer and scenario planning driving your company’s performance to the next level. d-one enables you to align all business functions, to execute with speed on one single committed plan: transparency, reliability, and agility.


  • Demand planning and optimization – takes reliable forecasting to the next level by also including key input from sales and marketing teams.
  • Demand sensing with machine learning and analysis – provides the best possible algorithm to improve forecast predictions and optimize supply chain planning.
  • Supply planning and optimization – based on the latest demand insights, potential bottleneck forecasts and targeted inventory levels.
  • Inventory and shipment planning – Built-in optimizer with multiple goals functions to improve inventory and shipment planning. Automatic stock projection to support optimized demand and production management.
  • RCCP – balances required and available man, machine and material capacity and highlights, tracks and reports potentially critical situations and issues in capacity utilization.
  • Measure your forecast accuracy – Better sales forecasting accuracy helps businesses figure out upcoming issues in their manufacturing and supply chains and course-correct before a problem arises.
  • Financial impact & revenue trend – linking the S&OP plan to the financial plan enabling Financial analysis producing inputs into Pre-S&OP and Executive S&OP.
  • Executive and summary dashboards –  focus on crucial KPIs and monitor your performance at a glance, facilitates better decision-making on a tactical planning horizon and balances service, cost and inventory for an improved Return On Capital Employed.
  • What-if analysis and Scenario Simulation – Simulate different scenarios in order to understand which scenario best suits the business need, and get prepared for potential changes in the business environment.
It’s time to bring your supply chain planning to the next level.
Contact us to design together the best path or learn more about d-one platform and modules