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Logistics Viewpoints made an interesting parallel to what supply chains are experiencing right now and why supply chain agility is a non-negotiable:

The rug has been pulled out from beneath us. We will never be able to put it back the same way because what served yesterday’s needs won’t be useful going forward.

Exceptions are the New Normal

The swings in demand have been too visible and prominent. Nielsen data from March showed a 76% increase in household supplies like laundry and paper products, but a 36% drop in cell phone accessories. We can no longer forecast future trends using historical data because exceptions are the demand planner’s entire day.

One Fact is Certain

Disruption is the post-pandemic new normal and you’d better be ready for it. That jives with what execs are saying: 72% of CFOs ranked better resiliency and agility as the #1 trait that would make their company better in the long run, according to PwC’s COVID-19 CFO Pulse Survey.

So How Do We Do This?

There are 3 capabilities essential to an agile supply chain:

  1. Visibility. You must be able to plan across the entire supply chain network, not just in functional silos. What solutions allow you to sense demand problems instantly, monitor data and alert you to exceptions, and show the impact?
  2. Concurrency. Look for ways to make/manage synchronized plans across time horizons and organizational processes simultaneously, so that you can prevent costly surprises.
  3. Collaboration. Integrated business planning (IBP) technology can quickly and accurately evaluate what-if scenarios to help stakeholders collectively move forward on enterprise-wide strategic plans and S&OP processes.

Create an Agile Supply Chain Now

‘Putting the rug back’ means building one seamless management process for Sales & Operations Planning, integrated with Demand and Supply Planning, Forecasting and Replenishment.

By combining IBP process best practices, an effective IBP governance structure and an IBP tool optimized to meet an organization’s requirements, supply chain agility is within reach, as are the associated benefits of:

  • Faster and more informed decision-making,
  • Improved collaboration,
  • Improved service levels,
  • Inventory reduction, and
  • Cost reduction

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