It took Brexit, the end of international law, a pandemic, a few near-global wars, and other vicissitudes for the Supply Chain planet to finally (almost) begin to free itself from the dictate: “Make accurate forecasts and you’ll ensure your company’s success by having the right product at the right time in the right place”.
The introductory session at Gartner’s Supply Chain Planning conference in London on 10/30/2023 was symptomatic of this.
The themes developed were as follows:
– Disruptions are becoming increasingly frequent – whether caused by external or internal phenomena.
– You need to change your approach to planning: forget your obsession with precision (of forecasts and plans) and be open to a range of possibilities! A plan, a number, is not a relevant approach to resilience – assume you’ll be wrong.
– Implement digitally enabled scenario planning – Excel and PowerPoint are not fit to consider the parameters at work and their interdependence.
– Strengthen your company’s immune system by identifying risks and investing wisely: select the risks you want to avoid through preventive measures – such as redundancy – and those whose impact you want to limit through rapid response strategies.
Your role as planning manager is no longer to balance supply and demand – an illusory exercise given the pace of events impacting you – your role becomes to help your organization grow by navigating through turbulence in supply chain.
One company was singled out as an example of resilience: Ukrainian pet food manufacturer Kormotech. This company faced a shortage of raw materials, and a halt to exports, some of its staff joined the army, and access to its main markets was closed. The company faced up to the situation, reorganized, developed a new supplier base, and implemented solutions to maintain its business and continue to grow.
At Demand Driven Technologies and our partner ABM Cloud, we are proud and happy to count Kormotech among Intuiflow’s customers, and thus to have contributed perhaps a bit to the company’s resilience.
Gartner is a highly influential organization for large companies seeking technological solutions for their supply chain. Having long advocated excellence in forecasting processes and the omnipotence of complex control systems, it’s refreshing to see that today’s messages are in line with our approach of the last ten years. Granted, Gartner’s hype cycle still lists DDMRP as “obsolete before plateau” – but its new communication on “resilient planning” confirms our development roadmap more than ever!
The debate (the battle?) goes on, and we intend to take part in it – join us on November 29 in Phoenix for the Supply Chain Planning conference organized by… Gartner!
For those of you wishing to delve deeper into the subject of resilience, we recommend Walid Klibi’s excellent presentation at our French user conference, as well as the presentation on this theme by our customer Macopharma.