Why you cannot do without sales forecast

In Customer Experience, Events, Marketing and Sales, The Mobile Customer by Aris Arcilla

Learn how to cope with supply chain challenges and make your sales forecast more accurate in a simpler way.

The economic environment has changed dramatically. Over the years, consumption habits have followed new trends brought about by technological innovations and changes in the way people communicate. Nowadays, buying online and on the fly is a common behavior. The online channel has contributed to this trend and will continue to significantly modify the supply chain organization.

Speed and agility are the key challenges for companies operating in a fast-moving market. And while doing so, here are elements they need to factor in when making important sales forecast decisions:

  • Bigger information flow
  • Variability of the demand
  • Unpredictable customer behavior

The statement is clear: the past trend will no more predict the future. The number of exogenous factors influencing demand have become so important that it is almost suicidal not to improve the collaboration between the supply chain’s stakeholders.

Sharing information and experiences between all stakeholders is the solution. An environment where all the customers (customers of rank 1, end-customers…) would share their demand forecasts almost on real-time would drastically help the supply chain to foresee the future trends and anticipate the fluctuations, rather than facing it afterward.

For example, if your sales force would share the latest information they have by updating their forecasts on a regular basis, it would allow the supply chain to adapt the production tools and safety stock consequently.

  • What is more annoying than an information concerning a demand cancellation from a customer that it is not updated in the forecast tool? It may cause an overproduction and additional inventory costs that may put the cash flow at risk.
  • What happens when a major promotional event is not communicated by the marketing to the forecast department? It will certainly lead to a quick shortage in the point of sales and will affect the service level and the image of the organization.
  • What happens if your biggest customer does not communicate that he will have to order twice the usual quantity for the next month? Past sales do not reflect this “exceptional” orders and it will be almost impossible to fulfill this requirement on time.

Collaboration, adaptability and agility are the key component for a company to achieve its supply chain goals. A sales forecast tool is also required to address these demands and at the same time remain cost efficient. 

The reality is…

In the context of a fast changing market, companies can no longer wait half a year to shortlist tools and another half implementing it meanwhile crossing fingers and hoping that the tool will actually achieve ROI.

Moreover, if companies grow fast, supply chain tools have to follow the growth. What has not been anticipated at the beginning of the project has to be taken into account by another time-consuming and costly project and so forth.

Whether your company sells, produces or distributes products in a domestic market or worldwide, accurate sales forecasts can save you time, money and disappointments, it is a different and better way of managing, and the forecasting tool should not be an obstacle.

Join our webinar:

On February 4th or 11th 2015 at 10am and discover Colibri (sales forecast tool) through a 30 minutes live presentation and Q&A session with Supply Chain Experts

Register here – save your slot

Colibri can offer you the best ROI* for a minimum of investment.

*We estimate that for a company with a turnover of USD 200M and an average inventory cost that represents 2 weeks of turnover (8MUSD), Colibri allows 5% savings in 6 months that means USD 400 000.

Discover this innovative collaborative tool through an exclusive Webinar, presented by sales forecasts experts.

Click here to know more about COLIBRI. 

nicolas_sales forecastThis guest post came courtesy of Nicolas Commare. He is the current VISEO Business Development Director for ASEAN and COLIBRI Managing Director.

Nicolas Commare has more than 15 years of experience in supply chain management and has worked for major accounts in the retail industry such as Louis Vuitton or L’OREAL. He is at the heart of COLIBRI’s conception in coming up with the idea of an affordable and quick to deploy tool.