Most organizations realized in 2020 that their traditional, manual planning processes were inadequate at best, and a liability at worst. QueBIT and its software partners specialize in helping clients move from disconnected, siloed planning into a collaborative and agile planning process turbocharged by automation and smart use of AI. This future state is Extended Planning & Analysis – or xP&A.
Why Move S&OP to a Formal xP&A Planning Platform?
Even though an organization may have been successful in the past running S&OP activities in spreadsheets, having the process run via systems and technological advancement will yield many benefits across the organization, including:
- Gain transparency and collaboration between teams and functions to drive informed decision making.
- Build more realistic forecasts to align with customer insights and requirements.
- Align disparate functions (demand, supply, finance, and leadership team) through clean data, one version of the truth, and transparent metrics.
- See the financial impact of decisions and scenario analysis immediately for more agility and faster decision making.
The goal is to implement tools and systems (including ML/AI) to drive processes, and behavior improvement among cross functional stakeholders.
How Can QueBIT help?
In addition to software implementation, data management, and AI-based forecasting models, QueBIT also aids the line of business in change management. Adoption and buy-in are critical for a planning evolution to be successful, and having completed over 1,000 projects in 20 years we know how to get there.
- Commitment at all levels in the organization
- We work with the leaders and cross functional team members to communicate the path forward. This includes in town halls, 1:1 meetings, and other forums, where we can support the “what’s in it for me” mindset.
- Cross Functional Alignment and Engagement
- We will actively work with team members who will be impacted by the transition from the current way of working to a new S&OP format. We will also list down the training activities, engagement model, and morale booster discussions to ensure that we review the implementation progress journey.
- Post go-live we support not just the software but also the people through pulse check surveys and other mechanisms to understand the morale of the team.
- Learning and Training
- As part of change management, we help list down the gap areas (technical, capability, education, behavior), and approach for individual department / impacted employees to drive clear action items. With your engagement we can make this a seamless transition.
- Continuous Improvement
- As the S&OP process becomes the new way of working, we can track progress on monthly basis. This means regular check ins (with leadership and functional team members), follow-on trainings, and additional development items, where required. We track progress using hard metrics and KPIs as well as softer examples of success, including time saved/repurposed, advantages from faster planning cycles, and more.
How Do We Get There?
We won’t say its easy, but we can show you the steps need to change your process. Our common approach includes:
- Establish change mechanism and phase roll out plan
- Involve, acknowledge, socialize, and collaborate with stakeholders
- Train the planners and administrators
- Smooth transition of the process
- Measure your progress
- Celebrate small wins and build towards transformation
A full project plan and phasing is delivered after scoping. The chart below shows how a typical implementation is phased and spread across time.
Client enablement (technical training, process revisions, change management) happens throughout the project based on specific needs identified during project initiation.
QueBIT’s ultimate goal is to make you successful in improving your planning process and decision making ability. If you’re interested in learning more about how to begin please contact us for an exploratory discussion.