What-if Analysis: 3 Applications in the S&OP Process

While embedding financials is the bedrock for expanding the value from S&OP, adding robust what-if analysis capabilities can unleash its maximum potential, thus delivering true Integrated Business Planning.

What-if analyses allow users to evaluate alternative strategies, policies, and tactics to maximize their revenue, profit, and working capital performance while delivering on service level commitments and properly considering risk and supply chain constraints. Over the past year, we’ve discussed this topic with current and potential customers and partners. We’ve found companies tend to be fairly clear in articulating their business needs. Surprisingly though, S&OP managers have more difficulty articulating the technology capabilities required to deliver on the business need.

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Prescriptive Analytics Use Cases for Sales and Marketing

As the flood of customer information continues to pour in through an ever increasing number of digital touchpoints, big data use cases for sales and marketing have grown exponentially.  The growth of predictive analytics has, in turn, also been driven by customer-focused use cases.  Companies are attempting to understand the underlying correlation/causation in those data lakes and turn that information into better targeting, promotions and demand forecasts.

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Opportunities for Enterprise Consultants Embracing Advanced Analytics

Enterprise consultants are uniquely positioned to maximize the benefits derived from advanced analytics, provided they act swiftly. The nature of new, complex, advanced analytics requirements places consulting firms at an advantage over traditional software companies. Consulting firms, understanding their advantaged position, are rapidly adopting predictive and prescriptive analytics, due to the following:

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River Logic, Inc. cited as Innovative Business Analytics Company Under $100M to Watch

International Data Corporation (IDC) recently released the report titled “Innovative Business Analytics Companies Under $100M to Watch.” The report features vendors that are innovating around three key trends in the business analytics market. These trends are: Collaborative Decision Management, Cloud-based Analytics, and Mobile Analytics.

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Finding directions in a complicated world

I am lucky because I work with some really smart people. One of those really smart guys recently said to me that “All problems are search problems”. He went on to point out how Google has taken this approach and has been wildly successful (check out Google’s current stock price). When you enter anything into a Google search box, you will get some kind of result. You may be shopping, looking to answer what movie won the 1957 best picture Oscar (The Bridge on the River Kwai) or trying to find how to get somewhere. Google is going to search its database and get you an answer.

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The Role of Private Brands and the Retail Planning Process

The US retail industry is in turmoil. Manufacturers are facing increasing commodities prices, ever resilient competition, uncertainties in financial markets and customer behavior. The retailers, both brick-and-mortar and online, are viciously fighting for customers’ dollars and cents. Customers are worried about the economic downturn and try to sniff out deals and save, and they have many options to do so.

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Trade Promotion Optimization Results in 30 Days

trade promotion optimizationCo-authorship: Renat Stewart and Nathan Goldstein

As with any emerging business technology, early adopters of Trade Promotion Optimization (TPO) solutions are under significant pressure to validate their decision and to prove the return on their technology investments in a very short period of time.

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Trade Promotion Optimization Planner — Input Variables and Constraints

During a recent meeting, with a client seeking to improve the planning and execution of trade promotions across their organization, I was asked, “Which variables and constraints does TPO Planner™ (trade promotion optimization) consider when optimizing user-defined performance objectives (e.g., volume, revenue, profit)?”

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Trade Promotion Optimization for Retailers

The latest in retailer loyalty programs is here. Chains like Starbucks and Gap are increasingly tracking and rewarding customers who show up at their locations and check in via smartphone apps and social networking sites. Customers are offered real-time promotions on the spot based on their shopping habits and loyalty to the stores and/or brands. In theory, these kinds of retail promotions allow everyone to win; in reality, there is another story.

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Optimizing the Trade Promotion Planning Process

Q&A Session with Nathan Goldstein, Director of Trade Promotion & Marketing Analytics

Question: What are the traditional methods firms employ to plan trade promotion campaigns today?

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Supply Chain Brief