I believe many of the big manufacturing houses employ certain kind of software to analyse the demands for the products and also provide the results to the planning team to create the right manufacturing plan. But most of the times these software could be commercially available with lot of customisation requirements.
"I believe many of the big manufacturing houses employ certain kind of software to analyse the demands for the products"
@electrnx_lyf: I've worked on the development of these software, but there's a certain limitation to them. They can take into account past trends and other inputs like external factors but the output rarely matches the actual demand. This is because there's so much volatility out of the scope of the software and you cannot take into account all of it.
@TaimoorZ, i wonder what kind of engine is deployed in these softwares so that the software is useful to some extent. I do not know whether my comparison is applicable or not but financial industry also faces a lot of uncertainity on a daily basis and there are risk management departments which lower the risk exposures. Can similar algorithms be useful in managing the inventories, i wonder.
@Himanshugupta: It varies from industry to industry but in order to predict demand, the software looks at historical data for the last few years and for the relevant time period (month, week, day etc) and the growth factor. It also considers other factors that influence demand and are not reflected by the trends. This could include extra demand for a product because of a promotion or weak demand because of the launch of another competing product etc. All these together help in giving an estimate of the demand.
I'm out of my league when it comes to software. I'm sure there are out of the box solutions, but in manufacturing and supply chain, most of them seem to be customized. I think SaaS is supposed to replace that to some extent.
"I think SaaS is supposed to replace that to some extent."
@Barbara: SaaS is a very useful way for manufacturers to use these demand planning software. Through SaaS, they do not have to purchase the software themselves and deploy it. Hence, they save on the hassle of managing it. Besides this, they don't pay for it once and can pay as they use the service. This makes SaaS as a cost-effective option.
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
While no one really can accurately predict the future, we can take guidance from another Drucker saying which is the best way to predict the future is to create it.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.