Integrated Business Planning Required Shamrock Foods and Blue Ridge Supply Chain

IBP, often referred to as integrated business planning, or sales and operational planning, (or just S&OP), is a next generation collaborative planning solution that solves the costly problem of different business units working in silos. It accelerates a firm's ability to respond to market changes, eliminates time consuming data collection and analysis, and aligns planning to the broader business goals, ultimately getting companies to a one plan scenario.

One version of the truth
Some of the features provided by this powerful collaboration engine include dynamic drill-down capabilities, exception-based planning, and fully flexible hierarchy levels. The ability to create, configure, planning views in the UI (user interface) creates one version of the truth, only accomplished with integration of supply chain planning applications.
Integrated Business Planning Required Shamrock Foods and Blue Ridge Supply Chain

© 2021 Blue Ridge Solutions


Shamrock Foods is a privately-held, family-owned and -operated Forbes 500 company, Shamrock is an innovator in the food industry since its founding in Arizona in 1922. Shamrock specializes in the manufacturing and distribution of quality food and food-related products through a family of companies, including Shamrock Foods foodservice distribution and Shamrock Farms dairy manufacturing. Through its family of companies, Shamrock employs more than 4,000 associates nationwide. The company’s success is built on three unwavering principles set forth by the founder, W.T. McClelland, in 1922 – an unrelenting quality in people and products and service, an innovative approach to business, and a commitment to the community.

Praveen Padman (pictured left), a product manager at Blue Ridge



 

Adnan Maksoud (pictured left), senior manager of demand planning at Shamrock Foods





Recently Praveen and Adnan had a conversation about Supply Chain and IBP.  Following are some of the highlights.

Adnan Maksoud: 
As the senior manager at Shamrock Foods for the demand planning department, I lead demand planners and analysts, and work closely within our supply chain team which includes supply planning, sales, and operations. The main goal at Shamrock is to implement better forecasting, do better buying, and implement sales and operations planning for the whole enterprise. The team consists of ten people and it is within the supply chain organization. We act like the think tank of the organization, where we direct our buying team what to buy, when to buy, and how much to buy. The goal is to become more efficient within our supply chain.

Expectations of IBP implementation
Adnan Maksoud: 
We have not done an implementation like this before at Shamrock. We have instances where we purchased tools, like a standalone software. Having our supply planning tool and demand planning tool talk to each other collaboratively is a new concept; we are engaging different teams and insights, like sales and marketing, and then coming up with a final forecast and final decision for the whole enterprise. My expectations were that this would be difficult and tedious; in fact, bringing this to fruition was easy for everyone.

Why IBP makes sense
Adnan’s team has used the supply chain planning system for a long time as a long-standing Blue Ridge customer. During the IBP implementation, there were a lot of things to accomplish.  Pinpointing the exact business problems or scenarios helps other leaders understand what is solved with the integrated business planning module.

Adnan Maksoud:
Shamrock Foods has been using the supply planning platform daily, it is really where we do all our work. When looking at gaps in our business, and where we want to take things to the next step, that came down to having a consensus forecast, bringing our sales and operations plan together.

After six months of sales and operations planning, we started the IBP implementation, and noticed what was missing. In a meeting of finance people, marketing people, salespeople, and supply chain professionals, each had a different forecast. Then we had to consider the company budget and tie it all together to make one consensus decision as an organization.

Getting to forecast accuracy
Adnan Maksoud:
We wanted to get better forecast accuracy…better intelligence around our buying. We did not want to manipulate our supply planning tool too much or manipulate the forecast that's in it. We wanted that baseline to remain the same, to recalculate the way it does. We wanted to have a side forecast of different layers and ways to look at it differently. This is where IBP really came into play.

IBP single source for sales, marketing, and demand planning forecasts
Adnan Maksoud:
IBP allows us to have a sales, marketing, and demand planning forecast in the system. This way we come up with a consensus forecast and make the decision as a more collaborative organization. Blue Ridge allows us to do that while pairing with Supply Chain Planning. We have a smoother collaboration, a flow between the two tools. Once we have our demand plan, it flows smoothly into our supply plan and we see better execution.

IBP sitting on top of the supply chain planning platform
Adnan Maksoud:
At Shamrock, the KPIs from which we operate are service levels to customers and shrinkage in facilities. We try to minimize dumps and throwing away product, since we're in a perishable food industry environment. The big goal with IBP is getting to a much more accurate and collaborative, so that all different teams involved in making that decision are on the same page. The goal is better service from a customer service level perspective as well as from a collaboration perspective. We're taking our customers' input and feeding it into our system as a forecast, whether that's event planning, seasonality modeling, or menu changes from our customers.

By accomplishing these things, IBP leans out inventory because we have more accurate forecasts, and we buy better. We are able to control our supply more efficiently and avoid situations where we're overstocked and have to throw away dollars, throw away products that are expiring.
Integrated Business Planning Required Shamrock Foods and Blue Ridge Supply Chain


© 2021 Blue Ridge Solutions

IBP across industry sectors
Adnan Maksoud:
IBP is not tailored towards one company or one industry. Any company in any industry, any field of work, could use a tool like IBP. It brings together different departments and different insights.

SPOTLIGHT

Blue Ridge empowers Wholesale Distributors, Specialty Retailers and Discrete Manufacturers with the capability to adapt to market, product and competitive challenges by efficiently and effectively managing an ever-volatile supply chain.

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SPOTLIGHT

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