SandOP and IBP Process

Sales and Operations Planning and IBP:

Design and Roll-out of an Integrated Sales and Operations Planning Process and IBP process to include Financial Planning


    Sales and Operations Planning (S&OP) & Integrated Business Planning (IBP) Consulting          

    1.   Diagnostic of the Current Business Process

    2.  Design the meeting structures and content for the monthly cycle

    3.  Solution implementation for Demand-Supply Balancing (optional)

    4.  Training and Roll-out

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    Integrated Business Planning is the modern evolution of the classic Sales and Operations Planning Process.  

    In my consulting experience, the major reason for S&OP processes to fail is simple – the demand side of the organization just ignores it.  Salespeople simply do not show up for the meetings from the Sales Planner all the way to the VP of Sales. 

    When there is no participation from Sales or Marketing, then this becomes just an S&OP meeting.  I have attended some of these meetings and it is interesting to see how Operations folks discuss the forecast, the rough cut plan, the manufacturing constraints and finally decide everything is an OK. 


    We have been preaching Integrated Business Planning (IBP) for well over a decade despite criticism that this is just a new name for S&OP.  The key is to integrate the commercial planning forum and the operational machinery that executes the plan. 

    There are quite a few tools that have arrived on the scene to plug the gaps in the traditional S&OP process and pave the way for IBP to become the norm for supply chain transformation.  

    SAP IBP is one such tool completely hosted on the cloud offered by SAP.  SAP IBP includes IBP Demand, IBP Supply, IBP inventory and IBP S&OP.

    We want to outline a key set of steps necessary to implement the IBP

    The Key steps in an S&OP/IBP process re-design:

    1. Assess the key objectives of the Planning Process- Identify and Involve stakeholders in Sales, Supply Planning, Operations, Marketing, and Finance during the process definition phase. Interview key General Managers and understand their informational needs from the Sales and Operations Planning process

    2. Identify the key pain points- Since Sales and Operations Planning (S&OP)  is a collaborative process, the key is in establishing and improving internal communication and collaboration. The best approach is to start with the question, where do we have communication roadblocks? We need to identify areas where communication is missed, or ineffective. We also need to identify where communication is too late to be acted upon. An example of such a pain point will be to learn of a service failure for the first time in a score-card meeting after the end of the month

    3. Identify the Key Component Meetings- The key step in the process design is to plan and establish effective communication and decision sessions among the various functions. Our meeting design will derive from several white boarding sessions that revealed the various pain points in the process (step 2) and the key touch points in the organization. Where the touch points are heavy and involves frequent information sharing, that will indicate the need for a formalized information sharing session. Typically, the key meetings include the Demand consensus meeting, Supply Collaboration Meeting, the General Manager Review meeting, and the Operations Review meeting. In most organizations, there will be an executive Sales and Operations Planning meeting. But the type and content of the meeting depend on the needs of each organization

    4. Design Content and Timing of Meetings- Working with functional players from the key touch points, we will establish the type, sequence and timing of each meeting during the planning period. Through white boarding sessions, we will help you establish the key contents and the objective of each meeting

    5. Meeting Templates- we will help you design appropriate templates and summary reports to facilitate the meetings to be focused on key issues and arrive at a consensus recommendation. Valtitude with a vast collection of process reports in its knowledgebase, will help you design the template that is customized to your process needs

    6. Supply Collaboration Process- Once a consensus demand forecast is finalized, Supply planners will refresh their planning systems to arrive at their new schedule with constraints. The new demand may point to imbalances in their supply process including issues in raw materials, finished goods inventory, manufacturing schedule, and capacity constraints. The collaboration process should consider these issues to problem solve and decide a set of supply constraints to be acted on in the Operations Review meeting

    7. Budget Shortfall Review- Depending on the pain points of the current organizational process, we design this meeting to reconcile top-down financial and marketing forecasts with the operational demand plan. The GAP identification and resolution is a major part of the Sales and Operations Planning Process

    8. Exception Management- A well-defined process will thrive on exception management. All Component meetings will start with a follow-up of issues from the previous meeting and deal with exception issues highlighted by the meeting templates. A concise design of meeting templates will help you achieve brief, sharply focused, effective meetings

    9. Sales, Operations and Inventory Planning- This is a key part of the Operations Planning and review. The organizational consensus team will examine the Sales, Production and Inventory Plans and discuss major issues and bottlenecks

    10. Supply constraints and Scenario Management- The budget shortfalls may trigger management decisions on additional promotions and even key new product introductions. The process should be designed to be flexible enough to accommodate key top management requests to verify supply availability for key sales generating events. Promotions on key items can only be offered if adequate inventory is available or can be turned around in time to meet the promotional demand

    11. Value Chain Metrics- The Sales and Operations Planning process will be guided by the various value chain metrics that highlight performance and pinpoint areas of improvement. Metrics should be a good indicator of the state of the business and should call for quantifiable corrective action. The design of the metrics should help you align incentives holistically to help achieve the organizational objectives. The key metrics include Fill Rates, OTIF<, inventory targets, forecast accuracy, on-time delivery, order cycle times. will help you design metrics customized to how various functional players are aligned in your organization. With our research and analytics in this area, we have a unique advantage in designing proper Supply Chain Metrics and implementation.

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