This virtual meeting highlighted how to get the most out of S&OP with a modern and intuitive tool such as Vena Solutions.
S&OP: opportunities and challenges
Participants of the webinar confirmed that S&OP remains the best process for balancing supply and demand. The process may seem straight-forward: aligning sales and production planning with a company's financial targets. Yet it appears that many organizations still stumble over a number of known obstacles: data management, the discipline to go through the S&OP cycle every month, finding common goals, struggling with spreadsheets of all kinds.
Why is S&OP such a challenge?
Successful S&OP requires a lot! You need an integrated process approach with common business goals, strong leadership, good data management and adequate technology. During the webinar it was explained that it is impossible to run a good S&OP process if one of those elements is not present. You often see that teams revert to separate spreadsheets and that each department develops its own plan. As mentioned in the webinar, this very often leads to data loss. The lack of 1 central business plan, contradicting Excel files and a lot of manual data work, generally slows down the entire process, resulting in frustration and an extinct S&OP ambition.
Successful S&OP with Vena Solutions
Vena Solutions, developed by the Canadian software house of the same name, is a solution for the most diverse processes in which people and data go hand in hand. Peter Tegenbosch of Moore Business Analytics explained how Vena contains a number of basic blocks with which you can develop the S&OP process tailored to the organization. Vena offers the best of spreadsheets, but without the pitfalls. An intuitive process modeler allows to develop a powerful workflow that lets people from different departments (sales, production, finance) work together seamlessly). Data is no longer spread across various spreadsheets and folders, but is available anytime and anywhere via the Cloud. The integration with the ERP system ensures flawless data management, so that the S&OP plan is also smoothly converted into production or purchase orders: Vena puts the plan into action!
Demo shows how teams work smoothly together on the S&OP plan
During the last part of the webinar, Peter Tegenbosch gave an interactive demo. The S&OP workflow controls the entire process, allowing employees from Sales, Operations and Finance to collaborate smoothly. After the update of the sales forecasts, the system asks the stock planners to adjust the purchase and production plan. Immediately the impact on the financial plan also becomes clear. Sales, operations and finance really go hand in hand. But there is more: intelligent solvers take over a lot of repetitive planning tasks, all in a spreadsheet-like environment that contains a lot of Excel functionalities. S&OP becomes child's play, so to speak. Reports and Dashboards are easily shared and also the integration with PowerPoint, Word and Outlook has been thought of. Finally, Joël Wijns, Partner Supply Chain Consulting at Moore, briefly explained the importance of Moore's integrated approach to implementation: the business process and technology must go hand in hand to make S&OP a success...
In for more?
Well-designed S&OP delivers more predictable business results. In our opinion, Vena Solutions is an interesting alternative player that definitely deserves a place in the planning solutions market.
In case you missed the webinar, or if you would like to watch it again: let us know and we will share the recording and slide presentation. Curious about more? Please contact us if you have any questions about Vena Solutions or S&OP implementations.