A senior planner said that he knew when he achieved the excellence because planning department phones stopped ringing.
Planning excellence shifts the paradigm from continuous fire fighting to the preparation of plans to cope with changing circumstances.
The recipe to be successful in this kind of initiatives groups many diverse ingredients:
- Collaboration rules among departments.
- Reliable and close to real-time data: stock, production plan execution, goods movements, promotions… and policies for master data review.
- Processes covering demand planning, production planning and control, short and long term capacity planning, stock management policies and replenishment.
- Indicators of performance of every supply chain process.
- A single and shared plan with all departments.
- Technology to simulate the expected result before applying changes in material policies or resource capacities.
- Root-cause analysis and continuous improvement.
Finally, the path to planning excellence requires consistency and perseverance.