Planning Levels

Up to now the planning levels in Supply Chain Management were separated by concept, personnel and software technology and often organised in a hierarchical manner. Business processes define moves from broad levels (Sales Planning, Supply Network Planning, Sales and Operations Planning) to narrower levels (Production Planning, Scheduling). On the borders between the levels this separation leads to deficits in reliability and feasibility because of simplification of models, in reaction times to altered framework conditions cased by different master and transaction data and in relation to the economical evaluation and optimisation of the value chain.

Planning levels

The coarsened sequencing was caused by both processes and technology. When the current production planning systems were created both computer memory and computer power were seen as scarce resources, making simplified models a necessity for the process of long-term planning. These simplifying concepts and models are still present in strategic planning today (Supply Network Planning, SNP). This kind of constraint does not, however, any longer apply given the increase in information technology performance, making interactive planning and collaborative work possible.

OR Soft reconciles functions and processes from all planning levels based on mutual objects in a uniform model, the SAP ERP fine planning model, and proposes only presenting / modifying these in the required (aggregated) precision. Rough Sales and Operations Planning, SOP, thus integrates operational/tactical information and can produce optimised plans using simulated dispatching of orders using target functions. The use of fine planning models in SOP leads to planning on the basis of exact, reliable and up to date information. The improvements of this kind of paradigm change include more reliable planning results, improved decision-making support in finding compromises, especially integrating economic assessment, faster planning and less duplication of planning across levels as well as simplified system environments with fewer interfaces and central data storage.

The operations and strategic levels merge to a highly flexible planning element if the strategic planning can draw on technological information from the fine planning level.

back next