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Integrated Business Planning. What is it and why do I need it?

This month we tackled 10 common business challenges facing our customers and uncovered ways to start working through these to get a step ahead. 

And this is where Integrated Business Planning (IBP) comes into the picture. Rather than us listing every challenge which could arise with a few quick fixes, RFSCE wants to help you to plan, prevent problems and prosper for the long-term.  IBP is about improving business planning. It’s about learning how to align your company’s business goals across the finance, marketing, sales, and operational departments; gain greater visibility of internal relationships and resources; maximise output; and achieve a long-term business success.

But for now – who doesn’t love a good Q&A session? Check out the topics below to get you thinking about your business and it’s current situation. 

Welcome to the world of Integrated Business Planning. Sounds good doesn’t it! 

Inventory (raw materials, packaging materials, semi-finished products, finished products) etc. are all important parts of cash flow management. If the right balance of holding inventory is found, cash flow and delivery performance can be optimised at the same time.

By implementing sales forecasts, both the efficiency in product manufacturing and the deployment of employees can be optimised. This leads to lower manufacturing costs and thus higher margins.

Predicting sales enables data sharing between your company and your suppliers. With this extra information, suppliers can improve their material planning. This helps shorten delivery times and brings stability into the procurement process. One positive outcome of this data sharing is reliable delivery dates for your customers.

By predicting what our customers want (demand plan), production schedules can be optimised with workers allocated to tasks accordingly. The output will increase with less man power.

By building planning processes, supply can be better matched to demand by sharing information with suppliers and logistics companies. This results in shorter delivery times, fewer air freight shipments, significantly lower transport costs and above all, stability.

By grouping planning objects based on their value and dynamics (ABC & XYZ analysis), inventory levels can be adjusted to meet the needs of demand. This allows for massive space savings.

Before you look into technology options, you first need to set up your processes. Then you can define what you want to achieve and look into the market to find an appropriate solution.

Define your goals, set a plan & timeline for your company’s growth. By monitoring “capacity utilisation” (the percentage of an organisation’s potential output that is actually being realised), investments can be planned for the short, medium and long term.

Optimal planning processes ensure that the right products are manufactured at the right time. This optimises the use of production resources and thus energy consumption.

The better the planning, the fewer resources are required for procurement of materials and production of goods. This helps to optimise the eco-balance.

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