Revolutionise your demand forecasting

Forecast. 

To predict or estimate a future event or trend.

Let’s start with a forecast we’re all very familiar with as an example - the weather. Once upon a time, forecasts were based on historical data captured around certain dates. Then, with the invention of telegraph networks, weather conditions could be observed and shared across larger geographic regions to predict changes. But these days, Meteorologists have the power to see what’s going on all over the world and with the help of computer modelling, can make ultra-precise predictions in real-time.

Demand Forecasting is no different. The science and technology in this space has moved on in leaps and bounds. Today’s tools have the power to give Demand Planners access to data-driven, actionable and explainable insight. These advancements are making the need to input reams of historical data into Excel all but redundant. Also drawing to a close are the days of formatting and maintaining epicly complex spreadsheets - which means more resource freed up to focus on strategy, and better continuity throughout staff changeovers.

Today’s tools have the power to give Demand Planners access to data-driven, actionable and explainable insight

Consider a new way to forecast demand

It’s been said that there are 6 types of Demand Forecasting:

  1. Passive Demand Forecasting
    Using past sales data to predict the future
  2. Active Demand Forecasting
    Building in market research, marketing campaigns and expansion plans.
  3. Short-term projections
    Looking at just the next three to 12 months to manage your supply chain.
  4. Long-term projections
    Making projections one to four years into the future, taking into account historical data and future goals.
  5. External macro forecasting
    Incorporating trends in the broader economy and predicting how those trends will affect your goals.
  6. Internal business forecasting
    Factoring in your internal capacity to meet demand.

However, there’s a new methodology to add to the list that can do all of the above, and more.

AI, ML & Big Data-based forecasting

This next-generation method of predicting demand pulls on innovations in technology to enhance business operations and balance supply with demand. Not only can smart forecasting tools automatically pull in information from across your technology stack, they can scour carefully-curated data sets from all over the web and correlate findings with your business stats. This consolidation of internal and external trends, macro events, seemingly irrelevant anomalies and your business’s historical data is a powerful mix. Add the capability to constantly refine and learn and deliver real-time, actionable insights (thanks to AI / ML) and you have a Demand Forecasting tool that can reduce waste and seriously impact your bottom line.

All it needs is a skilled strategist at the helm.

Eyes front

Until recently, businesses spent a lot of time looking over their shoulders, with no choice but to use solely historical data in their demand predictions. The consequences were often dire. For example, in 1974 US Electric Utilities had planned to double their generation capacity by the mid-1980s. This was based on historical sales trends and a forecast of 7% annual growth in demand. The reality was that from 1975 to 1985, growth crawled along at just 2%, meaning the extra plants that were being built were not required. This is just one example of how relying solely on historical data can be a dangerous business.

Related

July 27, 2022
Enhance your demand pattern analysis

Understanding demand patterns in the Data Age Demand pattern analysis is becoming increasingly valuable in business, as a way of predicting and preparing for future fluctuations in market demand. The problem is that the “best-practice” models that are still taught and employed today rely solely on historical patterns to make predictions. In reality, looking backwards […]

Read More
July 19, 2022
Level up your Demand Planning

The not-so-basics of Demand Planning At its simplest, effective Demand Planning means reducing the gap between held inventory and actual sales. It’s about meeting demand in the most efficient way possible to help retail organisations avoid stock-outs at one end of the scale, and wastage at the other. Yet this vital role is often drowned […]

Read More
August 8, 2022
Shift from sales forecasting to demand planning

Top-down or bottom-up? How to approach forecasting in a data-driven world. The role of any good Supply Chain Manager is to ensure regular reporting of the variances between top-down executive targets, and the bottom-up demand of the market. Effectively, this is the budgeting process, and achieving a balance between demand and supply is the best […]

Read More
July 27, 2022
Optimise your SKU productivity

Not all SKUs were created equal Many businesses are so focused on building revenue, their profit suffers as a result. Organisations worth their salt know that selling at all costs doesn’t make good business sense. A more sophisticated way to measure and drive success is ROI (Return On Investment). What is the business cost of […]

Read More
July 19, 2022
Demand forecasting for new products

Inject the smarts into your new product planning Consumers now have more choice than ever before - of what to buy, and where to buy it. The explosion of e-commerce has driven product and competitor proliferation to all-new levels, so what worked before (i.e. analysing previous product performance) no longer serves as an accurate indicator […]

Read More
July 19, 2022
Demand forecasting by store

A formula for accurate demand planning at store level (Hint: it doesn’t start with “=”) Technology is the biggest enabler of people in the digital age. Yet arguably, it’s also the biggest threat to the modern day workforce. When it comes to using technology to enhance demand planning in business, harnessing digital tools in a […]

Read More
July 19, 2022
Move from demand forecasting to demand sensing

Demand forecasting is always wrong. Thankfully. If demand forecasting was a precise science, we would be out of business. Organisations would apply their tried and tested formulas, and would emerge from their endeavours armed with 100% accurate predictions to take into their next phase of demand planning. Their wash-ups would show an exact correlation between […]

Read More
July 27, 2022
Integrate demand and supply planning

Demand planning + supply planning = integrated business planning If demand planning is forecasting customer demand, while supply planning is managing supply according to these forecasts, you’d be forgiven for thinking that these functions went hand-in-hand. All too often though, demand planning and supply planning departments work to different agendas. One driven by ensuring sufficient […]

Read More

Want to learn about how
QU can work for you? 

Check out the benefits of the different QU solutions
View QU Solutions

Would you like to see
 QU in action?

Get in touch with us to schedule a demo
Request a Demo
Copyright Quantiful © 2022
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram