Despite all attempts to protect Supply Plans from nervous shocks, priority changes from Sales. In an increasingly unpredictable supply chain, change of priorities because of “urgent customer demands” is a reality that S&OP needs to address. Often when such urgent changes in priorities are discussed in an S&OP meeting, convenience wins over rationale. Worse, these conversations are repeated cycle after cycle sapping out useful energy. Frequent conversations do not necessarily imply better decisions. From our experience, what helps organizations greatly, are scenario-based decision tools, that help compose alternative supply plans based on changing priorities. Using scenario planning, supply planners can inform Sales about the options available to them. With visual tools clearly comparing plans on service levels and resource utilization metrics, a win-win response can emerge.
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