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Demand Planning Newsletter Switch to PDF September '09 /1st Fall edition

DemandPlanning.Net services include:

» Demand Diagnostics
» Demand Modeling
» Metrics Design
» Solutions Consulting - APO
» S&OP Consulting

Demand Forecasting in SAP APO
In-House Hands-On Modeling Workshop:
SAP APO is a popular supply chain planning tool among many Fortune 1000 companies today. The APO DP training offered by demandPlanning.Net is a comprehensive three day course that will teach your planners both the theory as well as the modeling mechanics of the tool. Learn More!

Demand Planning and Forecasting Tutorial
2-Day Interactive Training: Bring Your Laptops!
Oct 22-23, 2009
Hamilton Park Hotel, Florham Park, NJ


Whether you are new to demand forecasting, or a seasoned pro looking to enhance your knowledge, you cannot afford to miss this opportunity:


You will learn to...

  • Set up a Demand Planning Process for your business
  • Clean your data and adjust for data anomalies
  • Use Statistical modeling to create baseline forecasts
  • Use exponential smoothing and linear regression models
  • Leverage the Regression capabilities in Excel
  • Incorporate promotional events into your forecast modeling
  • Use Forecast Error as a diagnostic to improve model quality
  • Reconcile the top-down category forecast and the Bottom-up SKU level Demand Plan.

We will explain the modeling methodology and process behind accurate demand forecasts and how to effectively use promotional information to arrive at a consensus forecast. The focus will be on demand modeling using statistical techniques, the methodology to perform model diagnostics, forecast accuracy measurement and the process to incorporate market intelligence.


Each training day will also include an industry-specific presentation from a senior supply chain manager:

Day 1- Demand Planning for Over the Counter Health Care Products
Guest Speaker: Senior Director of Demand Planning, Wyeth Consumer Health

Day 2- Forecasting for fast moving fashion products
Guest Speaker: Director of Estimating, Avon Products


You will have ample opportunity to meet, interact, and learn from other demand planning professionals with team challenges and networking exercises.


Upon completion of the tutorial, you will be awarded a certificate of completion from Demand Planning LLC, attesting to your newly-acquired skills in Demand Planning.

View Brochure PDF

Upcoming Boston APICS and NESCON Events:

Sep 29, 2009 - Careers in Supply Chain Management - Panel Discussion

Oct 5, 2009 - NESCON: Supply Chain Innovation & Optimization

SAP APO Demand Planning – usability versus functionality
by Mark Chockalingam, Ph.D.

I have heard from Consultants and business managers across many companies: Very rarely there is user adoption of standard APO forecasting techniques. Users typically use an off-line forecasting process and enter the forecast into the planning book or even upload it with IT help. Why is it?

Are the standard models and algorithms not sufficient for the business models? Or is it becuase the users and IT staff do not understand the statistics and functionality behind APO?

Let me address some possible reasons for this unfortunate situation.

The complexity and scale of the data and functionality actually drowns out the requirement for business process mapping and leveraging the functionality to meet the business needs. So the key ingredient of building the bridge between what the users want versus what the tool can do is perhaps left out in the cold – either due to the hectic project management schedules or due to the lack of understanding by IT staff/Integrators etc... Continue reading!

Forecast Alerts
by Mark Chockalingam, Ph.D.

Popular software packages have forecast alert monitors. Each software may term it differently:

1. Manugistics calls them lists
2. APO and Dematra call them as alerts

An overworked demand planner typically plans in the order of 1000+ skus each month. That is where these alerts come in handy. You set a pre-determined alert based on the condition meeting a threshold……. Voila! As soon as the month-end job runs and re-creates the models, the alerts kick in and do their job.

You get a report, perhaps emailed to you at night comprised of all those items that exceeded your threshold. Then your job becomes a tad easier. You walk in to the office with your day planned out thinking to yourself:

“I am going to address those 45 SKUs that show a MAPE above 30% first, then address the next 100 that are above 20%”.

Typically the alerts are set using a comparison of new model values to the in-sample historical values. In essence, they address the model fit issue and alert you to specific situations where the models are insufficient or just plain wrong. Quite possibly, the history may have an anomaly as well... Continue reading!

Join the professional group on Linked-In!

Join us now to discover two brand new sub-groups: "Demand Planning In APO DP" and "Demand Planning Training"

View and join the group here


10 VP level speakers are confirmed to lead insightful new approaches to tackling your forecasting challenges!


» Demand Planning Manager, Greenland, NH
» Demand Planner, North Wales, PA
» Demand Planning Manager, Minneapolis,MN
» Director of Demand Forecasting

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