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Integrated Business Planning: A Framework for Success

by Vanguard Software

The modern marketplace is complex, with countless moving parts and variables that can impact a company’s strategy. Accounting for all of those factors, both internal and external to an organization, is simply impossible without a highly organized process that leverages the specific strengths of technology and effective internal procedures, particularly concerning volatile and dynamic supply chains. That process, better known as Integrated Business Planning (IBP), provides the stable and reliable footing a company needs to traverse such complicated waters. IBP gives organizations the foresight and agility required to pivot as needed and bend with unforeseen variables, all while continuing on a path towards operational goals.

IBP at a glance

Businesses require a comprehensive, cohesive plan to adequately meet the demands of a fickle marketplace with ever-segmenting consumer groups and countless affinities. Such a plan meshes the specific needs and goals of both the Sales and Operations teams to properly align an organization’s sense of direction, especially in the face of adversity and unexpected detours.

IBP leverages seamless communication and well-organized strategy between Sales and Operations teams, along with the prescient abilities of forecasting, planning, and optimization software, to create that needed cohesiveness. It provides a game plan for a company to rely on as demand shifts and external factors displace supply chain assets, all in a quantifiable manner that can be analyzed and measured to gauge overall effectiveness.

IBP is a team effort

Successfully integrated planning begins at the team level. Given the segmented nature of most organizations in the digital era, where specialties are developed and retained within specific departments and teams, companies must identify and nurture a cross-functional, multi-disciplinary group of key employees to optimize communication within a company. Information silos epitomize inefficiencies in modern commerce, preventing an organization from ever reaching its potential due to insufficient data sharing.

A well-organized group within a company that can break down those communication barriers between separate departments gives an organization the efficient framework needed to make fully-informed decisions relative to market dynamics. Likewise, providing real-time reports to decision makers means choices are made and directions pursued based on accurate, timely data and not conjecture or best guesses.

IBP thrives with Vanguard Predictive Planning

Of course, assembling a well-trained, communicative internal team and procedures is only the first step in properly implementing IBP. The second and equally important component of the IBP equation is utilizing technology platforms that provide the necessary data throughput and analytical capabilities to quantify the information and transform it into actionable insight.

Vanguard Predictive Planning is explicitly designed to give companies these essential tools, creating a single platform that provides both the advanced analytics and workflow design that optimizes communication and data sharing between separate departments, teams, and individuals. Sales and Operations teams can now work in an entirely coordinated manner, using insights from one to help guide decisions made by the other, collectively for the benefit of the entire organization.

The marketplace is too complex to allow inefficiencies to persist. A meticulous IBP strategy that maximizes logistics data and assets through a combination of internal procedures and technology gives companies a well-informed map around the infinite variables they face. With Vanguard Predictive Planning, organizations can gain a competitive advantage over other market participants that rely on antiquated, traditional supply chain models. Make decisions today to ensure viability tomorrow.

About Vanguard Software
Vanguard Software introduced its first product for decision support analysis in 1995. Today, companies across every major industry and more than 60 countries rely on the Vanguard Predictive Planning platform. Vanguard Software is based in Cary, North Carolina.

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