skip to Main Content

Demand and Supply Planning in Unpredictable Times

Demand Planning   Industry News   Supply Chain Management   Supply Chain Planning  

With everyone’s health a top priority due to Covid-19, we’re facing unprecedented times, and in many cases flying by the seat of our pants to maintain as much normalcy for ourselves and our families as possible. Now enter the workforce, and more specifically manufacturing. It is challenging enough to operate a manufacturing business day-to-day, still accommodate customer needs, and remain competitive. But what about dealing with a completely unprecedented situation with a global impact or massive and rapid market shifts?  It may feel next to impossible to plan demand and supply without a crystal ball, yet supply chain leaders are already accustomed to dealing with some degree of unpredictability, like long-term market shifts, while still operating a successful businesses.

You may feel you’re left wondering which possible scenario may play out next? How can I help plan practically for the future of my company?

How can supply chain planners manage the unexpected?


  • Organize: Tie planning and production together using a clarified view of inventory, capacity, and other business and production data. This helps you gain visibility of your business cross-functionally, improve inventory accuracy and scale up or down as needed in the event things change rapidly.
  • Plan: Automate and incorporate the addition of accurate data and statistical forecasting to demand and supply plans. This can illustrate the potential risks your company may face with many supply constraints, determine a new way forward when demand beings to surge back, and prepare your execution plan.
  • Execute: Use all your planning inputs across the organization for an Integrated Business Plan in a single source solution. When shifts happen in demand everyone will be on the same page with the path forward at the ready.
  • Improve: Use your historical data and comprehensive modeling to plan without biases in the future after the dust has settled. This results in data-driven inventory decisions to prevent oversupply or under supply best you can.


These four capabilities are delivered by a modern planning solution to provide high-resolution visibility and put you at the ready to react with agility. You also gain a better delivery track record, higher customer satisfaction, and can increase market share during more predictable times.

Buyers Guide for Supply Chain Planning Software

Follow these 6 best practices to ensure you get the right software solution when you need it. Download our Buyer's Guide Now

Related Articles

6 Questions that will Improve Your Capacity Planning Strategy

Capacity planning has always been a core strategic process in the manufacturing industries' quest to meet the demand of customers in a timely and efficient manner. Having accurate insight into your plant’s production capacity within specific durations of time while [...]

6 Tips to Improve Inventory Management through Automation

For companies with outdated or manual inventory management systems, lack of certainty about the accuracy of inventory levels can make managers and decision-makers apprehensive during busy times.  If calculations and inventory management practices are off, companies may find themselves with [...]

Strategies for Optimizing Customer Service Levels

  While every business works diligently to improve efficiency and operational excellence, at the end of the day it’s the customer who determines a company’s success.  And companies are looking for new ways to optimize customer service levels to improve [...]

How Demand Planning Fits into Integrated Business Planning

For years, many companies relied upon Sales and Operations Planning (S&OP) to align processes in their supply chain.  By doing so, companies were able to improve performance and profitability.  As the value perception of S&OP matured it became apparent that [...]

The Method in the Madness – Choosing the Best Demand Planning Method

Aligning demand with supply is a critical function for any company.  And it’s one with a lot of moving parts.  The right demand plan must have a balance of inputs from all areas of the company to create forecasts that [...]

Step up your demand planning in 2020

How can you take your demand planning to the next level? Start with communication. As Tech Target said, "Demand planning is not a compartmentalized component within the company. It's an integrated and detailed set of actions that connect multiple activities [...]

Thinking through digital supply chain

Going digital in supply chain takes knowledge and careful planning.  As Gartner said, "While any organization can throw technology at planning, it makes more sense to pause a minute and think about what type of digital technology is appropriate." Think [...]

How accurate are your forecasts and how accurate do they need to be?

A forecast doesn’t have to be correct to have value. In fact, the Institute of Business Forecasting & Planning said, “We need to continually remind people that a forecast is not going to be 100% accurate, and that it does [...]

How do you choose your aggregation levels?

When it comes to aggregation you could traditionally choose top-down or bottom-up. That is not necessarily the case anymore. The Institute of Business Forecasting & Planning said, “Middle-out forecasting is another option, starting somewhere in the middle of a hierarchy; [...]

Forecast vs. Demand Plan – do you know the difference?

Do you know the difference between a forecast vs. demand plan? A forecast is a prediction of demand based on numbers seen in the past. Demand plan starts with the forecast but then takes other things into consideration like distribution, [...]
Subscribe to our Blog
Back To Top