A U.S.-based automotive accessories retailer will replace its spreadsheet-based planning system with Vanguard Software in a bid to increase demand forecast accuracy and improve several key performance indicators (KPIs).
With Vanguard’s automated forecasting and optimization engines, the automotive parts supplier expects to:
- Increase inventory turns and cash flow
- Reduce back-orders
- Maintain or improve inbound freights cost and gross margin levels
To accomplish these goals, the manufacturer needs to more accurately forecast demand, as well as more efficiently create and manage purchase orders, the company’s Director of Purchasing said. He said the implementation will include a full review and evaluation of all purchasing, inventory, and supply chain management business practices.
“So far we’ve been using an in-house where people are working long hours in Excel,” the purchasing director said. “We recognized a need to have much higher intelligence in purchasing and off we went looking. After much research and several demonstrations, it was very clear that Vanguard was a fit in terms of functionality, ease of use, and advanced analytic capability – well beyond the competition.”
Features Sought by Automotive Supplier
Other capabilities that impressed the supplier included:
- Cognitive forecast method selection
- Forecast algorithms capable of analyzing sales history, seasonality, inventory levels, marketing inputs (sales, offers, anomalies, etc.), and lead times for optimal purchasing forecasts and recommendations
- Multi-Echelon Inventory Optimization (MEIO)
- Reporting functionality
- “What if” analysis for cash flow and profit (demand curve) forecasts incorporating proposed changes to price, cost, net terms, and order size/days on hand, etc.
- Inventory turns and days on hand (DOH) filterable by date/season, category, vendor, customer, and SKU