Supply Chain 2020 will continue collapsing cycles, challenging Supply Chain professionals and taking advantage of exponential technology shifts.
How do you handle stores with space constraints?
As a retailer I recently spoke to said, “we employ special manual processes to hand feed our stores that achieve high sales, but are lacking in space to properly house the usual inventory levels associated with the high sales. These manual processes are time consuming and error prone and the mistakes result in havoc.”
In my experience, just about everyone in retail wants to get out of the spreadsheet trap and leave their error-prone, standalone, manual process behind. No spreadsheet can keep pace with the up-and-down trends of seasonal and fashion-driven demand, as well as demand signals by location—there’s too much uncertainty for spreadsheets to handle.
In the US, Fall means one thing: kicking off the new football season. Of course, since I am a true supply chain geek, when I think about seasons I immediately think of supply chain planning, as I’m sure you do too!? After a particularly difficult football weekend, I pondered the similarities between the struggles of my favorite NFL team and the difficulties of implementing a winning Sales and Operations Planning (S&OP) process.
Supply chain convergence certainly sounds like a good thing. After all, in mathematics we talk about converging on a solution, don’t we? In the supply chain world, when the disciplines of planning and optimization converge, it’s like a rising tide of synergy that lifts all boats.
The struggle to balance customer demand with available supply is as old as trade itself. Sales and Operations Planning (S&OP) processes have evolved over the last 30 years to address this age-old problem, yet recently SCM World declared “S&OP is still the top inquiry within the SCM World community.”* Gartner and Aberdeen have also indicated that S&OP innovation is a top priority for companies seeking to balance and align future demand and supply, predict capacity and material problems with enough time to do something about them, and understand the financial consequences of production and purchasing decisions.