Determining S&OP Rollout Readiness

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S&OP Rollout Readiness

What kind of resource involvement is required for a successful S&OP rollout? It can vary substantially from company to company due to a variety of factors, but some requirements are fairly universal.

The most essential item is executive sponsorship. As with most software implementations or new business processes, if this critical piece is missing, it won’t matter how many resources you have. If the initiative does not have the support of the top executives, it will not succeed.

Successful IBP projects generally include the following resources:

  • Project sponsor/manager (40-50% FTE):
    • Provides daily oversight and guidance
    • Serves as main point of contact with the software manufacturer and internal client groups
    • Develops or manages project plan and overall deliverables
  • Functional core team members (15-45% FTE each): 
    • Represent end users from sales, supply chain, finance and possibly others to validate business requirements and process maps
    • Define functional requirements
    • Provide testing data and use cases
    • Perform testing and more
  • IT (20-30% FTE): Generates extract data (and ensures data quality) needed for S&OP software
  • Users (10-25% FTE each): Perform Alpha, Beta, and Final Acceptance testing and training

Determining S&OP Rollout Readiness

In addition, the need for executive sponsorship goes across the supply chain executive team, sales, and finance. Having just one line of business executive sponsorship is not sufficient; all teams involved in the process must have their executives on board. This includes trusting the numbers (no shadow systems), the process, the outcomes, the decisions, and actually using the S&OP system.

Successful process changes and software implementations also require strong change management. While this is not necessarily a resource issue, it affects all of the resources involved.  Proper training, communications, and planning are imperative.