Inventory Planning Blog

The State of Inventory Planning - Chapter 5

Posted on Tue, Sep 25,2012@10:00 AM

Achievable Bottom Line Results

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Tags: Inventory Planning, SAP, SaaS, NetSuite, IBM, web based inventory planning, Sage, Valogix

The State of Inventory Planning - Chapter 4

Posted on Tue, Sep 04,2012@05:00 AM

 WAYS TO IMPROVE REPLENISHMENT PLANNING

Intelligent replenishment inventory planning includes several components, of which forecasting is just one element. Complete, automated planning systems handle all behavior including low volume items as part of a total process. Advanced planning solutions also incorporate inventory optimization, which dramatically improve replenishment planning. Why? Because optimization considers the wild cards in planning. It considers how random the demand of an item is, i.e., standard deviation and service level objectives, and it does it for each item, at every location, leaving nothing to chance (no spreadsheet can do that!)

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Tags: Inventory Planning, SAP Business One, SaaS, NetSuite, Supply Chain Managment, IBM, web based inventory planning, Sage, Valogix

The State of Inventory Planning - Chapter 3

Posted on Thu, Aug 23,2012@09:50 AM

THREE COMMON SENSE APPROACHES TO INVENTORY PLANNING

How should a planner set the reorder point and reorder quantity (or order-up-to level) for thousands of items, perhaps at multiple locations? Due to the absence of an "intelligent‟ planning system, three commonly used approaches have been Brute Force Review, Economic Order Quantity, and Periods of Supply, usually done in spreadsheets.

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Tags: Inventory Planning, SAP Business One, SaaS, NetSuite, IBM, web based inventory planning

The State of Inventory Planning - Chapter 1

Posted on Mon, Jul 09,2012@07:00 AM

What state is your business in?

Until recently Small and Mid-size Businesses (SMB) did not have affordable, easy to use software tools to help them effectively manage and balance their inventory investment. Software solutions that forecast, plan and optimize an inventory are found in widespread acceptance in large enterprise companies but these solutions can cost between hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars and are generally not affordable or usable by SMBs.

In the vast majority of SMBs, spreadsheets are the common tool in use. They are time-consuming to build and maintain, are usually static data repositories, and according to a prior study by a major consulting firm over 90% of them contain significant errors. But they do serve a purpose. Inventory-laden companies like manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers, and aftermarket service organizations often see that inventory is their largest asset. The cost of carrying excess and obsolete stock, as well as not having sufficient saleable inventory to meet demand is enormously high.

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Tags: Inventory Planning, SAP Business One, SaaS, NetSuite, IBM, web based inventory planning, Valogix

Analytics in Inventory Planning

Posted on Thu, May 31,2012@08:56 AM

A key factor in inventory planning is having and using the right data. There is so much data available you need to have the right set to plan properly. Using analytics in inventory planning can help ease the pain of understanding the data and making informed decisions. It can help you plan faster and more accurately as these systems segment the data properly and automatically present the data in a way that is easy to understand. Too much data with too many choices is not good either as it will be confusing often providing the wrong results. As they say in the Indiana Jones movie, The Last Crusade, “…but choose wisely, for while the true Grail will bring you life, the false Grail will take it from you.” In other words, the right data will generate the right results and the wrong data will be disastrous.

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Tags: Inventory Planning, SaaS, web based inventory software

Cloud Integration - Flexibility for Web-Based Inventory Planning

Posted on Thu, May 10,2012@09:30 AM

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Tags: Inventory Planning, SaaS, in the Cloud, web based inventory planning

Valogix Web Based Inventory Software Now Available

Posted on Tue, Apr 17,2012@03:59 PM

Web based inventory software for business is becoming more plentiful. Solutions specifically built for the web are in great demand around the world. Take for example, Australia and New Zealand, which are experiencing not only increased demand but an increase in the number of available web based inventory software applications.

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Tags: cloud, SaaS, web based inventory software, Valogix, Inventory Planning Solutions

Inventory Planning for Spare Parts - Part 3

Posted on Tue, Apr 03,2012@12:12 PM

Spare parts have an important life cycle

The graphic below shows the important milestones in a part’s life cycle. These have an impact on inventory planning for each item.  This section examines how those milestones impact parts planning.

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Tags: Inventory Planning, SAP Business One, SaaS, in the Cloud, Inventory Planning Solutions

Inventory Planning for Spare Parts - Part 2

Posted on Tue, Mar 13,2012@10:03 AM

Multi-location inventory planning adds complexity.

Companies approach their parts inventory planning in many different ways - from seat of the pants guessing, to team collaboration, to spreadsheets that may invoke more team collaboration and manual changes, to forecasting software and some to advanced planning solutions. The more parts and locations you need to plan, the more complex.

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Tags: inventory optimization, SaaS, in the Cloud, automotive, restaurant, Valogix, Inventory Planning Solutions

Inventory Planning for Spare Parts - Part 1

Posted on Wed, Mar 07,2012@09:50 AM

This will be the first in a series of articles covering spare parts inventory planning using advanced technology solutions.

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Tags: Inventory Planning, inventory optimization, SaaS, in the Cloud, Valogix

Inventory Planning and Optimization for 2012 – The Clear Advantage

Posted on Tue, Jan 10,2012@11:44 AM

Happy New Year!  2012 brings the promise of improving global economies. Balancing short term resilience with longer term needs is what is needed now.  Reducing costs, buying less, increasing productivity, improving cash flow is important, and to keep these inventory objectives balanced and in perspective you need an efficient way to optimize these important business demands.   Improve your competitive advantages responsibly and efficiently with inventory planning optimization solutions.  Waiting until its too late in your ordering cycles will invite your customers to investigate other opportunities, and that can happen by making the reduction of the wrong item at the wrong time.
 
If your company tends to reduce items with the highest investment because it creates a larger reduction faster, what it actually does is creates potential stock outs, higher backorders and increased expedited shipping – and, even more importantly, customer dis-satisfaction.  We all know that when customers are unhappy they become former customers.  Randomly cutting inventory has been proven time and time again to be the wrong strategy as does overstocking your inventory.

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Tags: Inventory Planning, SAP Business One, cloud, inventory optimization, SaaS, Forecasting Inventory, advanced inventory planning solutions, replenishment planning, IBM, Wholesale Distribution, Supply Chain, manufacturing

Solving Complex Inventory Challenges with Technology

Posted on Thu, Sep 08,2011@12:51 PM

Complex environment creates inventory challenges
Inventory management has become more challenging in today’s complex and competitive business environment. Yet many companies are still maintaining inventories manually, and performing complicated computations using spreadsheets and point solutions. Keeping track of reorder points can become an overwhelming task as businesses grow. And standard spreadsheets offer little help in driving down costs and improving revenues because they are time consuming and frequently contain multiple errors. Ray Panko, University of Hawaii compiled data from numerous studies that indicates up to 90% of spreadsheets contain significant errors.

Where is the money hiding?
It is common to find excess and obsolete stock representing thirty-sixty percent of inventory and to find that five-forty percent of the time customer demands cannot be met (based on Valogix’s experience). At worst, companies lose sales; at best, they must ship items at a premium in order to fulfill orders, further driving down the profit margins.

There is good news on the (planning) horizon
Automated planning tools are designed to remove complexity and improve inventory mix. They dramatically reduce the amount of time required to properly plan inventory. By automatically forecasting, replenishing and optimizing, companies can manage inventory more efficiently and meet the demands of customers and suppliers at lower costs for a powerful competitive edge.
Automated planning tools work in conjunction with ERP software to improve the inventory planning processes. Automated tools consider several factors—budget, carrying costs, planning horizon, leads times and more—to create an optimal stocking quantity. The entire planning process must be in sync to create a plan that works—from forecasting to setting stock and calculating replenishment levels, and from purchasing to production.

How advanced planning solutions work
  1. They are dynamic, changing as business   condition change.
  2. They account for many variables, ensuring the right coverage without over/under buying.
  3. They calculate an optimal quantity, saving money without sacrificing service levels.
  4. They eliminate the need to manually review every item and manipulate data.
Inventory planning is a competitive advantage
Advanced inventory planning and optimization not only automates the entire planning process, it also dramatically increases positive cash flow. Smartly reducing inventory, mitigating stockouts, decreasing expedited shipping costs as well as planning time mean less money going out, and more money to invest in the business. Increased sales and productivity gains add to the competitive advantage.

Using planning solutions in the cloud
We deliver our 100% web-based solution as a “virtual appliance.” By wrapping all the technology into a  virtual appliance, customers have the ability to use the latest in technology quickly, thanks to a rapid implementation process. Using the software via SaaS not only frees up cash and resources, but delivers an up-to-date product without lengthy upgrades and expensive hardware; all that is needed is the Internet.

The benefits of cloud-based planning
Unlike solutions installed on premises, cloud-based planning offers significant benefits to both users and companies.
  • Multi-user platform (Linux, Windows, Unix)
  • Browser UI
  • Enhanced Security

Inventory optimization has big payback
  • Reduced inventory investment by at least 20%
  • Reduced expediting and emergency shipments by 35%
  • Improved planner productivity by reducing planning time by 60% - 80%
  • Ability to control and reduce replenishment spending by 15%
  • Stockouts reduced by 12% - 22%
  • Increased productivity by 5% to 10%
  • Improved employee and customer satisfaction




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Tags: Inventory Planning, SaaS, inventory management

Why Aren't You Investing in Inventory Planning Solutions?

Posted on Mon, Aug 01,2011@09:52 AM

Investing in smart solutions that improve your inventory planning is an important business decision and necessary in today’s global and troubled economy. Sometimes the concept of spending money to save money is very hard to accept. There are no guarantees the investment will pay off, so there is some level of risk involved. But, is it any riskier to do nothing? To maintain the status quo?
There are many reasons or excuses for not upgrading to a modern, easy to use advanced inventory tool.

Which Category do you fall in?

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Tags: SaaS, advanced inventory planning solutions