7Demand Plans

This chapter contains the following:

Manage Demand Plans

Create a Plan

You can create plans and then duplicate them to save time and perform planning activities incrementally. For example, you have defined the line of business associated with an existing plan, such as organizations and items. You can create a copy from that existing plan rather than define a new plan.

Use this generic procedure to create a plan.

  1. In a Supply Chain Planning work area, click the Tasks panel tab.

  2. In the Tasks panel drawer, click the Manage Plans link.

  3. In the Search Results region, from the Actions menu, select Create.

  4. On the Create Plan page, complete the general information for the plan:

    1. Enter a name.

    2. (Optional) Provide a description for the plan.

    3. Select the plan type.

    4. Select a supply planning mode.

      Note: The Supply Planning Mode attribute is only available for a supply plan, demand and supply plan, or a sales and operations plan type.
      • Supply plan and demand and supply plan types: Options are Constrained and Unconstrained. Constrained is only available if you have opted in for Constraint-Based Supply Planning. Otherwise, the supply planning mode defaults to Unconstrained.

      • Sales and operations plan type: The supply planning mode defaults to Aggregate.

    5. (Optional) Select the Enable for OTBI reporting check box to make measures from a plan available in Oracle Transactional Business Intelligence (OTBI) for reporting.

    6. Select the owner.

    7. Define the access level:

      1. Select Public to make the plan accessible for all users.

      2. Select Private to restrict the plan accessible to you and to a list of users that you want to provide access.

  5. Based on the type of plan that you selected, complete the required information in one or more tabs (Scope, Demand, Safety Stock, and Supply).

  6. Click Save and Close.

Copy a Plan

You can create plans and then duplicate them to save time and perform planning activities incrementally. For example, you have defined the line of business associated with an existing plan, such as organizations and items. You can create a copy from that existing plan rather than define a new plan.

Use the Duplicate procedure to:

  • Create a copy of an existing plan that includes the plan data.

  • Create only a copy of plan options.

Use these steps to copy a plan.

  1. Navigate to the Duplicate Plan dialog box:

    1. In a Supply Chain Planning work area link, click the Tasks panel tab.

    2. In the Tasks panel drawer, click the Manage Plans link.

    3. Enter the search parameters and click the Search button.

    4. In the Search Results region, select the plan that you want to copy, click Actions, and then select Duplicate.

  2. In the Duplicate Plan dialog box, complete the following information for the plan:

    1. Select a copy type:

      • Copy plan options only: The planning process copies plan options to the duplicate plan, but not the plan data.

        Typically, when you duplicate the plan with the Copy plan options only option, the next step is to edit the plan options before running the plan.

      • Copy plan with reference to base plan: When you duplicate the plan with reference to the base plan, the next step is to open the copied plan as you're likely to make edits before running the plan. On the Manage Plans page, the Copied From column displays the name of the plan that you copied from.

        Caution: If you delete the base plan or rerun the base plan with the Refresh with current data option, plans copied from the base plan become invalid.
      • Copy all plan data with no reference to base plan: The planning process makes a full, standalone copy of the plan, which can include archived measures. For approved sales and operations plans, this option enables you to create a full backup copy of your plans at the end of every planning cycle.

        On the Manage Plans page, the Copied From column is empty for the new plan because it's a standalone copy of the base plan. Therefore, there's no reference to the base plan.

        The Copy all plan data with no reference to base plan option isn't available for demand plan types.

    2. Enter a name and a description.

    3. Define the access level:

      • Select Public to make the plan accessible for all users.

      • Select Private to restrict the plan accessible to you and to a list of users that you want to provide access.

    4. (Optional) Select the Load plan after copy check box to load the copied plan to memory. This check box isn't available for demand plan or sales and operations plan types.

    5. Select the owner.

    6. (Optional) Select the Include archives check box to make a standalone copy of your plan that includes archived measures. The copies of the archived versions are relabeled to remain consistent with the new plan name. This relabeling applies to both scheduled and ad hoc archive versions.

      The transaction history of when archived versions were created in the original plan isn't copied to the new plan. However, the new archived version names retain the date stamp and sequence number of when the archives were originally run.

      The Include archives check box is available only when:

      • The Enable for archiving check box is selected in the Scope: Advanced Options dialog box in the plan options.

      • The Copy all plan data with no reference to base plan is selected as the copy type in the Duplicate Plan dialog box.

  3. Click Save and Close

View a Plan

If you already have an existing plan, you can open the plan from the Plans drawer or by using the Manage Plans task. You must always run a plan before you can view it.

To open an existing plan from the Plans drawer to view it, do the following:

  1. In a Supply Chain Planning work area link, click the Plans drawer.

  2. Expand Plans, and select the plan of your choice.

  3. Click the Actions button and select Open.

    Tip: If you have many plans, you have an option to search a plan by using the Manage Plans task. In this case, provide appropriate search criteria and click Search. In the search results area, select your plan and click the Action button and select Open. Oracle recommends this method to view sales and operations plans.

Enable Plans for OTBI Reporting

Oracle Transactional Business Intelligence (OTBI) is a real-time, self-service reporting solution that helps you create user-defined and interactive reports. You can enable OTBI reporting for plans created in your Supply Chain Planning work area to:

  • Run reports in real-time to analyze supply, demand, and sales and operations planning plans

  • Generate user-configurable and easy-to-use reports by using business intelligence tools and charts

  • Analyze key metrics, such as exception metrics, inventory balances, pegged quantity, and orders to be released

  • Compare two or more plans that are enabled for OTBI reporting

To improve your supply chain performance, you can monitor and identify problem areas by using strategic insights into live and operational data. Compare different scenarios in real-time by using key measures to decide the best course of action. You can respond to changes by modeling complex strategies and plans to analyze and compare them. You can also define native OTBI capabilities like alerts based on exception conditions, user-defined measures, and conditional formatting to monitor or track problem areas.

To create OTBI reports, navigate to the Oracle Fusion Reports and Analytics work area. You can build reports by using the base measures available in your Supply Chain Planning work area. You can also create user-defined measures based on the base measures by using the standard business intelligence tools.

To open OTBI reports in a Supply Chain Planning work area, save the OTBI reports into the Report Components subfolder within the Transactional Analysis Samples folder. The Report Components folder is located in the shared Supply Chain Planning folder in the Reports and Analytics work area.

To enable OTBI reporting for plans, you must do the following:

  • Select the Enable for OTBI reporting check box on the Plan Options page of your supply, demand, or sales and operations plan.

    Note: You must run the plan after you enable it for OTBI reporting.
  • Set up reporting hierarchies by configuring the Product and Time hierarchies in the dimension catalog named Reporting Catalog. To configure the Product and Time hierarchies, use the Configure Planning Analytics task in your Supply Chain Planning work area. Depending on the reports that you want to generate, move the Product and Time hierarchies from the Available Hierarchies pane to the Selected Hierarchies pane. If you select multiple Product and Time hierarchies, ensure that you select a default hierarchy for the Product and Time hierarchies. The default hierarchies are used by default in the predefined reports.

You can build reports by using the base measures available in your Supply Chain Planning work area. You can also create user-defined measures based on the base measures by using the standard business intelligence tools.

Accessing the OTBI Reports

Perform these steps to access the OTBI reports:

  1. In a Supply Chain Planning work area, open a plan that is enabled for OTBI reporting.

  2. Click the Open button and then select a pane.

  3. In the Open Table, Graph, or Tile Set dialog box, do one of the following:

    • Search for your report.

    • Filter the list by selecting Type and then Report.

  4. Select a report and then click OK.

    The OTBI report opens in the context of the current, open plan.

When you search for reports, the list of reports in the search results includes predefined reports and user-defined reports created by you. You must save the user-defined reports into the Reports Components subfolder within the Transactional Analysis Samples folder to make them available in the Supply Chain Planning work areas. The following predefined reports are available only in the Oracle Fusion Supply Planning and Oracle Fusion Planning Central work areas:

  • Build Plan by End Item

  • Exception Summary by Item Order

  • Details by Item

  • Pegging Details by End Item

  • Plan Recommendations Summary Graph

Available Measures

The following measures are available in the Oracle Fusion Reports and Analytics work area:

  • Configure to Order Forecast Metrics: The following configure to order forecast metrics are available for demand plans, and demand and supply plans:

    • Final Option Demand Forecast

    • Final Planning Percent

    • Option Demand Forecast

      Configure to order forecast metrics support dimensions, such as Plan, Time, Product, Organization, Customer, Top Model, and Demand Class.

  • Demand Management Metrics: The following demand management metrics are available for demand plans, and demand and supply plans:

    • Bookings Forecast

    • Bookings History

    • Bookings History Value

    • Final Bookings Forecast

    • Final Shipments Forecast

    • Shipments Forecast

    • Shipments Forecast Value

    • Shipments History

    • Shipments History Value

      Demand management metrics support dimensions, such as Time, Product, Organization, Customer, and Demand Class.

  • Exception Metrics: The following exception metrics are available for supply plans, and demand and supply plans:

    • Exception Count

    • Exception Quantity

    • Exception Days

    • Exception Ratio

    • Exception Value

      Exception metrics support dimensions, such as Plan, Time, Product, Organization, Customer, Supplier, Manufacturing Resource, and Exception Type.

  • Order Metrics: The following order metrics are available for supply plans, and demand and supply plans:

    • Order Quantity

    • Implemented Supply Quantity

    • Order Value

      Order metrics support dimensions, such as Plan, Time, Product, Organization, Order Details, and Order Type.

  • Pegging Metrics: The following pegging metric is available for supply plans, and demand and supply plans:

    • Pegged Quantity

      Pegging metric supports dimensions, such as Plan, Time, Product, Organization, Customer, Supplier, End Demand, and Order Type.

  • Sales and Operations Planning Metrics: The following sales and operations planning metrics are available for sales and operations plans:

    • Consensus Forecast

    • Consensus Forecast Value

    • Final Sales Forecast

    • Final Sales Forecast Value

    • Sales Forecast

    • Sales Forecast Value

      Sales and operations planning metrics support dimensions, such as Plan, Time, Product, Organization, Customer, and Demand Class.

Define Scope Plan Options

Scope options determine the scope of the plan. Define or modify scope plan options on the Create Plan page, Scope tab or the Edit Plan Options page, Scope tab. You can configure plan organizations, items, time horizon, and planning level for demand forecasting. You can also define the filters for a plan, such as the hierarchy, level, and level members.

The Scope tab includes the following sections:

  • Plan Organizations

  • Forecasting Items (available only for demand plans or demand and supply plans)

  • Supply Planned Items (available only for supply plans or demand and supply plans)

  • Plan Parameters

Plan Organizations

Specify a hierarchy, level, and level members by which to filter the plan. Also, select the source system code to use for filtering organizations. Fields in the Plan Organizations section are required. If you select a level that's above the organization level, then organizations that belong to that parent level are included in the plan.

Forecasting Items

Specify a hierarchy, level, and level members by which to filter specific items for demand planning. Your selections are used in conjunction with your selections in the Plan Organizations section. Items that belong to a parent level are included. Fields in this section aren't required. However, if you don't specify a hierarchy, level, and level members, then you can't filter supply planned items. In this situation, your plan includes all planned items in the selected organizations, which can have performance implications.

Note: The Forecasting Items section isn't available for supply-only plans.

Supply Planned Items

For Supply Planned Item Type, select Manufacturing Plan (MRP) or Production Plan (MPS).

For Supply Planned Items, select the option to control the items to include in the supply plan. Options are:

  • All planned items: This option can have performance implications.

  • Demand plan items and all sales orders

  • Demand plan and WIP components

  • Demand plan items only

  • Demand plan items, WIP components, and all sales orders

Note: The Supply Planned Items section isn't available for demand-only plans.

Plan Parameters

The Plan Parameters section is available for plans of the plan types Demand Plan, Supply Plan, and Demand and Supply Plan.

The following table describes the plan parameters.

Parameter Definition Plan Types

Plan Horizon Days

Number of days in the plan. Set horizon days to forecast and plan for future needs. Minimize horizon days to avoid long-running plans. Default is 180 days.

Demand Plan

Demand and Supply Plan

Forecasting Calendar

Select the forecasting calendar, which must belong to the dimension catalog associated with the plan.

Demand and Supply Plan

Planning Calendar

Select the planning calendar, which must belong to the dimension catalog associated with the plan.

Demand Plan

Planning Time Level

Set the planning time level on the Scope tab and set the Forecasting time level on the Demand tab. The time levels you can choose depend on the selected planning calendar.

Demand Plan

Supply Planning Calendar

Select a supply planning calendar, which can be a 4/4/5 calendar or a Gregorian calendar.

Supply Plan

Demand and Supply Plan

Supply Planning Buckets

Specify your supply planning buckets. The list of values for the bucket types is determined by the supply planning calendar that you specify.

You can base your planning horizon on days, weeks, periods, or months. Or, you can specify a combination of daily time buckets and then specify less granular time buckets such as weeks, periods, or months. If you use two bucket types, the first bucket type must be Days.

Supply Plan

Demand and Supply Plan

Number of Buckets

Specify the number of supply planning buckets.

Note: For a constrained supply plan, the total number of planning time buckets can't exceed 120.

Supply Plan

Demand and Supply Plan

Do not create partial buckets

Select to create additional daily buckets in the plan to avoid partial buckets.

The planning process adds additional daily buckets to avoid the creation of partial buckets. This ensures that a week, month, or period always starts on the first defined day of that particular week, month, or period.

If you don't select this option, the plan doesn't add any additional daily buckets. Instead, the planning process creates a partial bucket and counts that partial bucket as the first week, period, or month, as specified in the plan options.

Supply Plan

Demand and Supply Plan

Measure Catalog

Group multiple sets of measures for use in a plan. By enabling only those measures that are needed for any specific plan, you can perform a focused analysis with improved performance. A planning administrator can create and modify measure catalogs.

Demand Plan

Demand and Supply Plan

Supply Plan

Price Lists

Price list used in revenue calculations. The default price list for use in value calculations is Item List Price, defined in Items table for Organization and Item.

Demand Plan

Demand and Supply Plan

Supply Plan

Exception Set

Lists exceptions to compute as part of a plan and also filters on Organizations and Categories for computing exceptions.

Demand Plan

Demand and Supply Plan

Supply Plan

Simulation Set

Lists simulation sets to use in your plan. A simulation set is a set of adjustments to plan inputs. Apply a simulation set to a plan to model different business scenarios.

Demand Plan

Demand and Supply Plan

Supply Plan

Set Up Forecast Consumption for Transfer Orders

In Supply Chain Planning, you can use internal orders, also known as transfer orders, to track movement of product between locations. Transfers and transfer demand can be modeled by including both the transfer from and the transfer to organizations in the plan. However, you can also choose to model transfer orders as independent demand during the forecasting and forecast consumption processes when you need to plan the source location but not the destination location.

When you create a demand plan or a supply and demand plan that includes transfer orders, the plan can only include the source organization. The forecasts will account for the supplies needed at the source organization. If you set up the plan with both source and destination organizations, then the planning process won't create a transfer forecast. Transfer orders between organizations in the same demand plan are excluded so that demand isn't counted twice. An organization forecast can include both sales orders and transfers orders.

The transfer order history is collected into Demand Management and Demand Management creates a forecast for the transfers. The transfer forecast will come into supply planning, and supply planning will also get transfer orders and consume, or reduce, the forecast appropriately.

The general setup for transfer order forecast consumption involves the following steps:

  1. On the Maintain Supply Network Model page:

    1. Associate the destination organization to the customer and customer site.

    2. If the customer and customer site is for interorganization transfers, then select the Use Customer and Customer Site for Interorganization Transfers check box.

    Note: You must set up these parameters on the Supply Network Model page before you can collect historical transfer orders.
  2. On the Collect Planning Data page, Parameters tab:

    1. Select your source system and then select Targeted for your collection type.

    2. On the Demand Planning Data subtab, select your shipments and bookings history measures in the History Measures and Attributes section.

    3. On the Demand Planning Data subtab, select the Collect historical transfer orders check box in the History Data Options section.

      Selecting this check box results in the planning process including the transfer orders with the sales orders when you collect the historical data.

  3. In the Demand: Advanced Options dialog box, select the Include transfer orders check box to include transfer order history in the demand plan. Access the Demand: Advanced Options dialog box from the Plan Options page, Demand tab.

    When you select the check box, then transfer order history is brought into demand planning, except when the transfer order history is between two organizations that are in the same demand plan.

    Note: The Include transfer orders check box is available only for demand plans or demand and supply plans from a Demand Management, Planning Central, or a Demand and Supply Planning work area.

Consumption of Forecasts Based on Transfers by Planning Central and Supply Planning

Planning Central and Supply Planning don't collect historical data, but they can get historical data from Demand Management. First, you must select the demand plan or demand and supply plan in the Demand Schedules section on the Plan Options page, Supply tab, Organizations and Schedules subtab. Next, the forecast consumption process checks the demand schedule advanced plan option Include transfer orders. If you selected this check box for your demand plan, then transfer order demands consume the forecasts at the transfer from organization in the demand schedule.

When you feed a demand plan as a demand schedule to Planning Central, Planning Central gets a transfer forecast from the demand plan. For example, you feed a demand plan that includes a transfer forecast for ORG-X and the plan in Planning Central plans for ORG-A and ORG-B. Planning Central gets that transfer order forecast for ORG-X where it's transferring from ORG-A, and the Planning Central plan consumes it.

Considerations for Storing Plan Data at Aggregate Time Levels

For demand plans and replenishment plans, you can select a planning time level to determine whether plan data is stored at aggregate time levels. Storing the demand signal data at a daily level isn't efficient if you forecast using demand signals at aggregate levels, such as weekly and monthly. When your data is stored at aggregate time levels, embedded analytics are more responsive and perform faster across your demand plan or replenishment plan. This decision is applicable to the Demand Management, Demand and Supply Planning, Planning Central, and Replenishment Planning work areas. Your choices for your forecasting time level are based on what you selected for your planning time level.

Planning Time Level Parameter

The Planning Time Level parameter is located on the Plan Options page, Scope tab, in the Plan Parameters section. Your selection for the Planning Time Level parameter determines the time level at which the plan data is stored. The values available for the Planning Time Level parameter are based on what you selected for the Planning Calendar parameter as follows:

  • Gregorian calendar: Day or Month

    Oracle Fusion Replenishment Planning doesn't support the daily planning time level for the Gregorian calendar.

  • Manufacturing calendar: Day, Week, or Period

Forecasting Time Level Parameter

For demand plans or replenishment plans, the Forecasting Time Level parameter is located on the Demand tab of the Plan Options page. The selections available for the Forecasting Time Level parameter are limited to the selected planning time level and any parent levels above it in the selected planning calendar. For example, if the Month level in the Gregorian calendar is selected for the planning time level, then the Forecasting Time Level parameter is limited to Month, Quarter, and Year.

Configuration Examples: Weekly and Monthly Plans

Weekly Plan: The following table shows an example of a configuration for a weekly demand plan or replenishment plan.

Parameter Location Parameter Value

Plan Parameters section of the Scope tab

Planning Calendar

a manufacturing calendar

Plan Parameters section of the Scope tab

Planning Time Level

Week

Demand tab

Forecasting Time Level

Week

Monthly Plan: The following table shows an example of a configuration for a monthly demand plan or replenishment plan.

Parameter Location Parameter Value

Plan Parameters section of the Scope tab

Planning Calendar

Gregorian calendar

Plan Parameters section of the Scope tab

Planning Time Level

Month

Demand tab

Forecasting Time Level

Month

Demand plan options determine the forecasting profiles to include as part of a demand plan run. Define forecasting profile options for a demand plan in a Supply Chain Planning work area on the Plan Options page, Demand tab or the Edit Plan Options page, Demand tab. The Demand tab isn't available for supply plan types.

In the Forecast Profiles region, select which forecasting profiles will be available for the demand plan run. You can also indicate the amount of historical data used for forecast generation. When you run the demand plan, the forecast profiles run in the specified order.

The demand planning engine can generate statistical demand forecasts at different time levels such as day, week, or month. Specify the time level in the Forecasting Time Level field on the Plan Options page, Scope tab.

Note: For sales and operations plans types, the demand planning engine can generate statistical demand forecasts at week or month time levels. You specify the time level in the Planning Time Level field on the Plan Options page, Scope tab.

Forecasting Profiles with Input Measures and Output Measures

In the Forecast Profiles region, specify which forecasting profiles to include as part of a demand plan. You can't edit the input measure or output measure for a forecasting profile.

The following table lists the predefined forecasting profiles.

Forecasting Profile Name Input Measure Output Measure

Forecast Shipments

Final Shipments History

Shipments Forecast

Forecast Shipments Including Event Activity

Final Shipments History

Shipments Forecast

Forecast Bookings

Final Bookings History

Bookings Forecast

Forecast Bookings Including Event Activity

Final Bookings History

Bookings Forecast

Analysis Set

An analysis set is an optional criteria used to apply a forecasting profile to a subset of a plan.

  • If you don't select an analysis set, then the forecasting profile applies to the full scope of the plan.

  • If you select an analysis set, then the forecasting profile will be applied to only the subset of the plan scope defined by the analysis set.

For example, you have an analysis set containing a specific set of products, and you select that analysis set for a forecasting profile. The forecast will be generated for the specific products included in both the analysis set and in the plan, instead of for all the products in the plan.

Historical Buckets

Define the amount of historical data to use during the forecasting process. The statistical demand forecasting process uses the number of buckets in this field to define the amount of historical data used.

The historical bucket substantially affects the demand forecast generated when you run the plan. Use at least 12 months of history, but 18 to 36 months of history is best practice. When setting the historical bucket, keep the following in mind:

  • Very long history affects plan runtimes and makes the forecast less relevant to current demand patterns.

  • Less than one year of history affects seasonal analysis. This includes both yearly seasonality and holiday impacts.

The historical bucket setting is a maximum amount of history used when generating a forecast. The actual amount depends on the data available for a given item and organization. For each item and organization, the forecasting process identifies all available historical data, removes any leading zero demand prior to the first positive demand point, and generates a forecast.

History Start and End Dates

The plan definitions drive the history start date. History end date is calculated based on the end date and historical buckets.

Forecast Buckets

Indicates how far into the future a demand forecast will be generated and is driven by the planning horizon set for the plan.

Locked Forecast Buckets

Indicates the number of buckets from the end of historical data that don't receive a new forecast when you run the demand plan.

Forecast End Date

Indicates the end date that a forecast will be generated when you run the plan. The end date is based on plan horizon and the current plan start date.

Run a demand plan to generate forecasts. When you run a demand plan, you can specify the scope of the plan that you want to run. You can decide whether to refresh the plans input data before running it. Also, you can run the plan immediately or you can run the plan in the background at a set time or on a repetitive schedule, such as daily or weekly.

After you create a plan, you must run the plan to generate the data. In the Run Plan dialog box, Parameters tab, run plan options are sequenced in the order of operations: data refresh, scope, and demand. The forecasting process runs first, and then the output is used for planning calculations. You can configure the following options for a demand plan:

  • Data Refresh Options

  • Scope Options

  • Demand Plan Run Options

Data Refresh Options

The following data refresh options are available:

  • Do not refresh with current data: Select this option to run your plan with no changes to demand, including no advancement of the plan start date. You also use this option for simulation planning.

  • Refresh with selected current data: Select this option to partially refresh your data. You can refresh transaction data and some reference data without performing a full refresh.

  • Refresh with current data: Select this option to refresh the complete plan with the latest collected data and advance the plan start date. If you're running the plan for the first time, this is the only data refresh option available and it's selected by default.

Scope Options

Select Archive plan to archive data from the plan.

Demand Plan Run Options

Use Demand Plan Run Options to generate a demand forecast. Select the forecasting profiles that you want to include as part of the plan. If you don't select a forecasting profile, then the demand forecasting process doesn't run.

Forecast Profiles: Select the forecasting profiles that you want to include as part of the plan. If you don't select a forecasting profile, then the forecasting process doesn't run.

Include details of forecast methods: Select to specify whether to provide details of the forecast methods that make up the forecast. You must select this option to view the resulting forecast decomposed by the forecasting method. Selecting this option increases the time required to run the plan.

Include details of causal factors: Select to specify whether to provide details of the causal factors that make up the forecast. You must select this option to view the resulting forecast decomposed by the causal factor group. Selecting this option increases the time required to run the plan.

Running a Demand Plan

To run a supply plan or an integrated plan, do the following:

  1. Open the Run Plan dialog box:

    1. In the Navigator, click the Demand Management work area.

    2. Click the Plans panel tab and expand the Plans list.

    3. Select the plan that you want to run, click Actions, and then select Run.

  2. In the Run Plan dialog box, Parameters, tab, expand Details to review the plan options:

    1. In the Data Refresh Options section, review the options and make appropriate selections.

      Note: If you're running the plan for the first time, you must select Refresh with Current Data. This option refreshes historical data, imports sales orders, and advances the plan start date to align with the current date.
    2. In the Scope Options section, select Archive plan to archive the plan during the plan run.

    3. In the Demand Plan Options section, select the appropriate options, including the forecasting profiles that you want to include as part of the plan run.

  3. To schedule running the plan, click the Schedule tab to set up the frequency parameters:

    1. To run the plan immediately, select As soon as possible.

    2. To run the plan in the background at a set time, select Using a schedule and then select a Frequency, such as Daily or Weekly

      .

  4. Click OK to run the plan.

Application supports the following forecasting methods:

  • Regression: The classical regression model is useful in identifying seasonal demands and casual-driven effects of holidays and price.

  • Ridge Regression: Regression that safeguards against one or more causal factors getting dramatically larger affects than others. It is often similar to regression.

  • Log Transformed Regression: Regression on a log transformed demand pattern. Useful to smooth out variance which can't be easily explained in demand. It is best suited for highly variable demand patterns.

  • Holt Exponential Smoothing: Use this method for instances where the amount of data is limited, such as newly introduced products. It creates a level-driven forecast without seasonality or other causal factors.

  • Croston Method for Sparse Demand: Use this method when a large amount of historical data is intermittent or spare. This method evaluates periodicity of demand.

  • Regression for Sparse Demand: Useful for sparse demand where there are still some seasonal or causal driven impacts.

When you forecast using a demand plan:

  • Each item-organization combination that has historical demand is analyzed separately.

  • The analysis automatically removes any zero demand entries and fills the missing historical data.

  • The analysis also identifies peaks and valleys in the history that are erroneous information or outliers.

  • The forecasting process evaluates which of the predefined forecasting methods are most appropriate for analyzing the particular item-organization's historical demand and selects one or more forecasting methods.

Modify Causal Factors

You use causal factors to understand the variation in historical demand and produce a highly accurate and adaptive forecast. You have 27 causal factors that you can use during the forecasting process to evaluate each item-organization and determine the impacts.

The causal factors include:

  • 12 months of the year

  • 7 days of the week when forecasting using daily data

  • Trend

  • Price

  • 6 holidays (They include New Year's, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and three placeholder holidays. You can use these to model any other holidays.)

Note: Except for Price, all causal factors have a dimension of Time only and do not vary by item and organization.

Modifying Causal Factors

You can modify and repurpose causal factors to meet the demand planning needs. Since all causal factors are on shared measures, changes to one plan's causal factor values impacts other plans simultaneously. Typically, you load the causal factor data from a flat file and then modify as required.

To modify a causal factor:

  1. Open a demand plan with history and horizon that matches the causal dates.

  2. Create a table displaying the causal factor measure and relevant time period.

  3. Modify the values of the causal factor and save. Next time you run any plan, the changes to the causal factor can impact the forecast.

Modify Demand Exceptions

You open a demand plan and open the exceptions table to view the demand exceptions. The exception table shows any demand exception with at least one exception.

You can use the search capabilities to focus on specific areas of exceptions, such as:

  • Exception Date

  • Specification values

  • Organization

  • Product

Modifying Demand Exceptions

You can modify the threshold associated with each demand exceptions to meet your business requirements. In addition, you can also modify the data aggregation level at which the measure is evaluated. Typically, when you calculate at a lower level, an exception returns more occurrences for the same threshold than when set at a higher level.

The reduction in exceptions is tied to two factors:

  • Less data points to evaluate at a higher level.

  • A large amount of data variability and noise that occurs at lower levels is reduced in aggregation. Hence, it's recommended that the threshold and levels be set to the most business-meaningful levels. For example, if the primary use of forecast is to ensure enough is produced, then organization aggregation should be increased from organization to line of business.

Overriding Demand Forecast

Based on business information and intelligence, you can override the statistical forecast.

To perform a forecast override:

  1. Open the relevant plan and open a table with the forecast measures.

    The table must contain the dimension and hierarchies that you want to view the data. You can use a table with several hierarchies and levels and collapse or expand a hierarchy until they see the relevant data aggregation.

  2. Double-click the cell and enter the desired value to enter an override. When you navigate away from the cell, the calculated measure associated with the override measure changes immediately.

  3. Click Save. Close the table without saving to discard any unsaved changes.

Approve a Demand Plan

As a demand planner, you typically follow a weekly or monthly planning cycle. During this cycle, you can review different forecasts and try different scenarios in an effort to get to the most appropriate future projection of demand. After the cycle is complete, it is best practice to take a snapshot or archive forecast results so that it can remain static while the next forecast cycle begins. You can reuse the static forecast as an input for other processes.

In your Supply Chain Planning application, you can set aside the demand forecast and save using the Approve action. After a forecast is approved, the approved values remain unchanged until the forecast is approved again.

Note: A plan approval is a recommended step, but not mandatory in the demand planning.

The following illustration is a visual representation of the demand planning process and shows how plan approval interacts.

A plan approval interaction flow of Final Shipments
Forecast and Final Bookings Forecast measures.

Demand planning process typically includes running a plan, user reviewing the plan, and overriding. These steps can impact the Final Shipments Forecast and Final Bookings Forecast.

When you determine that a plan's forecast is sufficiently complete for approval, you perform the Approve action. The approve action takes the data from the two final forecast measures and copies to Approved Final Shipments Forecast and Approved Final Bookings Forecast, respectively.

When do I run a demand plan?

You run a demand plan depending on your organization's demand forecasting cycle, which is typically either weekly or monthly. You also run a demand plan when major changes have been made to historical data or causal factors, or when new products have been added.