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demand and supply

Building a Resilient Supply Chain for a CPG Company to Navigate the Covid-19 Crisis Using Demand and Supply Mapping Solution

The coronavirus outbreak has put many industries in a state of flux, and the consumer packaged goods sector is hardly an exception. Shortage of essential supplies and empty shelves of supermarkets are some of the visible impacts of the global supply chain disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic in the CPG industry. Consumer packaged goods companies that are dependent on global sourcing are severely impacted as major countries such as China and the US have temporarily stopped global exports. If the same situation continues, it could create severe impacts on the global economy and lead to an unforeseen disruption of business operations. As such, consumers packaged companies should take actions to mitigate supply chain disruptions and build a resilient supply chain for the future.

For an in-depth market analysis on how COVID-19 is impacting your industry and data-driven insights to plan your next moves, request a FREE proposal.

Business Challenge

The client is a leading player in the Canadian CPG market. Leveraging over 20 years of experience, the client operates over 150+ retail outlets in and around Canada.

As the consumer packaged goods manufacturer solely depended on China for its raw materials, the rapid spread of the covid-19 pandemic compelled the client to bring operations to a complete stop. This subsequently resulted in a palpable short-term impact on the company. Even the client was unable to serve their customers’ demands due to warehouse discrepancies and inventory shortages. In an attempt to cover up for the losses and reassure customer trust, the client was looking to understand the demand impact specific to the business and devise short-term demand-supply synchronization strategy. However, considering the complexities involved owing to the rapid spread of the covid-19 pandemic, this seemed to be an uphill task that required understanding changing customer buying behavior and activating alternative sources of supply. This is when the client sought to collaborate with Infiniti Research to leverage their expertise in offering demand and supply mapping.

By leveraging Infiniti’s demand and supply mapping solution, the client also wanted to:

  • Conduct scenario planning to assess the impact of the covid-19 pandemic on their business operations
  • Determine required supplies and manage demand and supply requirements
  • Identify the company’s direct suppliers and understand their ability to meet supply requirements and potential risks
  • Understand the flexibility of key suppliers to shift production and purchase order fulfilment to other locations
  • Activate secondary supplier relationship to secure additional inventory and capacity
  • Improve visibility to supply chain risks
  • Focus on production scheduling agility

We have helped leading retailers and businesses globally with robust market intelligence and timely insights to formulate well-rounded, data-driven business decisions. Contact us here.

Our Integrated Approach

As a part of the demand and supply mapping engagement, the experts at Infiniti Research followed a four-phased approach.

#1: The initial phase of the demand and supply mapping engagement involved creating transparency on the multitier supply chain. This involved working closely with production teams to identify materials sourced from high-risk prone areas due to the coronavirus outbreak. This phase of the demand and supply mapping engagement also involved establishing a recovery plan for critical suppliers.

#2: The next phase of the demand and supply mapping engagement involved optimizing production and distribution capacity. Also, aligning IT system and support to ensure employee safety and support work requirements was done. Besides, the experts at Infiniti Research focused on conducting scenario planning to understand the impact of the covid-19 pandemic on the client’s operations.

#3: The third phase of the demand and supply mapping engagement involved managing cash flow. The experts recommended the client to focus on freeing up cash locked in other parts of the value chain and negotiating with suppliers.

#4: The final phase of the demand and supply mapping engagement involved focusing on Tier 1 supplier risks. This was done by gaining visibility into Tier 1 supplier inventory, warehouse, and order fulfilment status.

Results Obtained

With Infiniti’s demand and supply mapping solution, the client was able to create transparency on multitier supply chains by establishing a list of critical components, determining the origin of supply, and identifying alternative sources. Also, the experts helped the client to estimate available inventory along the value chain and manage demand and supply requirements. Besides, the client was able to optimize production and distribution capacity to ensure employee safety.

Also, the client was able to understand the demand impact specific to their business and subsequently devise a short-term demand-supply synchronization strategy. Moreover, by evaluating alternative inbound logistics options, they were able to maintain productivity and maximize profitability.

The experts recommended the client to develop a treasury plan for focusing on cash flow. Besides, the experts helped the client to identify their key direct suppliers and understand their ability to meet supply requirements and potential risks. This further helped them to efficiently manage inventory and capacity shortages.

The experts also helped the client to identify alternative suppliers in non-impacted regions of the world and improve visibility to supply chain risk. As a result, the client was able to build a resilient supply chain for the future and manage warehouse discrepancies and inventory shortages.

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demand management

Reducing Inventory Costs by 13% by Accurately Predicting Demand for a Canadian Retailer

Retail Demand Management Solution

As the world of retail distribution continues to transform, customers demand faster delivery of products. To meet the ever-evolving needs and demands of customers, retail companies will need to bring precision to every point of the supply chain. This is where the real power of leveraging demand management solution comes into play. Demand management can help retail brands to build a reliable forecast, improve product forecast accuracy, increase supply chain scheduling, optimize labor management, and create efficient cash flow management.

Effective demand management can assist supply chain managers in managing logistics activities and improving forecast accuracy. Request a FREE proposal today!

Business Challenge:

The client is a retail company based out of Canada.

Our client, a retail brand, faced significant losses due to overproduction. Besides, they faced difficulties in efficiently managing supply chain processes. In order to prevent supply chain disruption, they wanted to identify, forecast, and fulfill product demand based on the market needs. They chose to partner with Infiniti Research to leverage their expertise in offering demand management solution.

By leveraging demand management solution, they also wanted to:

Reduce supply chain costs: The client wanted to identify supply chain challenges and find out which processes cost the most and areas where revenue is being used inefficiently. By doing so, they wanted to restructure their supply chain structure and reduce supply chain costs.

Optimize inventory: By leveraging Infiniti’s demand management solution, the client wanted to review inventory levels in real-time and stock up the right number of products.

Minimize risks: By accurately forecasting the product demand in advance, the client wanted to better plan and make the right decisions about budgeting, sales, marketing, raw materials, and production. Besides, they wanted to minimize supply chain risks, improve distribution planning, improve supplier relations, and boost customer experience.

Are you facing similar challenges? If yes, our demand management solutions can help you to restructure your supply chain structure and reduce inventory costs. Contact us to leverage our demand management solution.

Our Approach

The experts at Infiniti Research followed a three-phased approach that involved:

Market research engagement to analyze industry transformations and developments in the Canadian retail market.

Inventory forecasting solution to forecast the target stock level to meet the potential market demand.

Demand planning engagement to predict demand patterns based on historical sales data, customer orders, and market indicators.

Results Obtained

By tracking real-time inventory data, the experts at Infiniti Research helped the client to improve visibility across the supply chain. Also, by leveraging demand management solution, the experts helped the client to optimize functions such as forecast-to-stock, order-to-cash, prepare effective production schedules, and optimize inventory levels to significantly lower operating costs.

Besides, by thoroughly analyzing the client’s core areas such as storage strategy, supplier relationships, and the speed of moving supplies, the experts helped them to identify processes that cost the most and areas where revenue is being used inefficiently. This helped the client to improve these core areas and produce significant cost savings. Also, the client was able to identify cost-effective solutions for transportation, gain access to better inventory management, and speed up transportation processes. The company was able to reduce inventory costs by 13%, and thereby enhance profits by 21%.

Want to know more benefits of leveraging our demand analysis solution? Request for more info and our experts will get in touch with you with comprehensive insights.

demand management

A Step Towards Better Demand Management: A Round-Up of Popular Articles on Demand Management

LONDON: Infiniti Research, a leading market intelligence company, has announced the release of their new storyboard series on why demand management is the fundamental driver for business growth and strategy.

With increasing competition, market volatility, and changing customer demands, companies are facing difficulties in managing product demands and satisfying their customers. Also, instances of over-stock and stock-outs results in inventory issues. They further result in customer dissatisfaction, increased expenses, and loss of sale for the company. Finally, the end result is loss of company reputation, coupled with financial losses and customer churn. In the wake of these scenarios, most companies are leveraging demand management solution which can deal with nearly all of the above risks while enhancing their efficiency level.

Infiniti’s demand management solution has helped various organizations deal with issues pertaining to analyzing and estimating consumers’ demands and other challenges such as the availability of multiple channels and proliferating SKUs. Below we have listed some of our latest articles and success stories which will give solid reasons on why demand management solution is important for your business.

Are you facing similar challenges in your business? Our experts can help. Request a FREE brochure to gain more insight into our services portfolio.

#1: A guide to the core components of demand management: One of the common challenges faced by companies is to understand the consumer demand for goods and services that they offer. This problem does not end with understanding demand patterns and purchase behavior of customers. The actual magic lies in managing these demands accurately. A demand management process involves a wide range of components depending on the unique processes of each organization. This article discusses all the key components of demand management and their benefits for an organization.

A Closer Look at Demand Management and Its Core Components

#2: Enhancing demand chain visibility with Infiniti’s demand management solution: Stock-outs are reportedly  one of the biggest concern for businesses. For businesses that face stock-outs too often, there is a risk of losing customers. Also, it can hamper the overall growth of the company. This was the same case with a chemical manufacturer based out of US. As an organization that valued the importance of uncompromised customer service, the company approached Infiniti Research for a solution. Infiniti’s demand management solution helped the client to accurately manage inventory and enhance the customer experience.

Demand Management Solutions – How it Helped a Chemical Manufacturer Enhance their Demand Chain Visibility

#3: Healthcare providers increase reliance on demand forecasting: With demographic shifts and rapid changes in policies in the healthcare sector, predicting future healthcare demands isn’t an easy task. Our client, a healthcare company in North America wanted to improve their portfolio management ability by focusing on improving the efficiency of their services and responding proactively to market demands. Our demand forecasting solution not only supported the client to develop strategic relationships with customers and suppliers, but also enhanced collaboration to create an efficient and lean supply chain, and ultimately, a competitive advantage. Read this success story to gain detailed insights.

Demand Management: A Critical Factor in Healthcare Portfolio Management

#4: Three must follow demand management best practices for medical device companies: Medical device manufacturers often face roadblocks when it comes to making their demand management process efficient. This often results in operational inefficiency and issues pertaining to fulfilling orders. So, to help you out, our experts have unveiled some of the demand management best practices in our latest article. This article also highlights how following these practices will help you in tracking the medical devices and staying ahead of competitors.

Infiniti’s Demand Management Solution Helped a Medical Devices Manufacturer to Achieve Average Savings of $7.2 Million

#5: Accurately predicting sales and allocating budgets with demand management solution: Overstock of products often result in financial losses, as companies are compelled to sell the excess products at lower costs. Our client, a food manufacturing company was facing similar challenges. They wanted to leverage Infiniti’s demand management solution to predict future demand patterns and respond proactively to changing customers’ needs. Our solutions helped them accurately predict product demand and fulfill customer orders, which subsequently enhanced profit margin for the company.

Demand Management : How Infiniti Helped a Major Player in the Food Manufacturing Industry in Achieving Supply Chain Agility

Infiniti Research helps organizations deliver sustainable business improvement. Whether it’s about defining deadlines, or setting customizable options, and automating tasks, our solutions are sure to offer you assistance. Request a FREE proposal to know how.

#6: What are the demand management best practices? In today’s competitive world, a number of companies are leveraging demand management solutions to meet the evolving needs of their business at every level. Demand management is a business process that enables organizations to respond to emerging situations in an effective manner by maintaining the right balance between supply and demand. This article uncovers some of the demand management best practices.

A Closer Look at Demand Management and Its Core Components

#7: Achieving average savings of $3.28 million with demand planning solutions: Today, the construction equipment market is at a crossroad. Therefore, companies in the industry are facing difficulties in sustaining their market share. Our client based out of Europe was struggling owing to the fluctuations in the market. They faced difficulties in managing the market demand, which subsequently resulted in profit losses for the company. By partnering with Infiniti Research, the client was able to survive this stiff competition and secure a spot in the European construction equipment market.

Demand Management Solutions – How it Helped a Chemical Manufacturer Enhance their Demand Chain Visibility

#8: Realizing savings of 27% with Infiniti’s demand and supply analysis solution: Inadequate supply and demand management can result in over-stocks or stock-outs. Therefore, it is imperative for companies to adequately forecast market demand and manage inventory. This success story highlights how one of our clients was able to achieve a 13% reduction on unfilled order and increase demand forecast accuracy with demand and supply analysis solution.

Realizing Savings of 27% in Year for a CPG Company with the Help of Demand and Supply Analysis

#9: Top demand forecasting methods for your business: Customer demands are extremely dynamic and unless organizations correctly chart out the demand patterns and ascertain the amount of goods to be produced, the chances of overstocking or understocking of goods are likely to happen. Using demand forecasting methods, companies can find what customers are buying and improvise on products that are not coping well in the market. To help such companies, Infiniti has listed the top demand forecasting methods in this blog.

3 Popular Demand Forecasting Methods to Help Your Business Reach New Heights

#10: Achieving 17% reduction in unfilled orders with demand management solution: A leading food manufacturer’s failure to anticipate the product demand not only affected their sales rate but also eroded consumers’ trust. This subsequently resulted in huge losses for the company. Read the complete success story to know the initiatives taken by our experts which helped the company in better inventory management and cost savings.

Demand Management : How Infiniti Helped a Major Player in the Food Manufacturing Industry in Achieving Supply Chain Agility

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Evaluating the Importance of Demand Analysis for Your Business

What is demand analysis?

Demand analysis involves understanding the customer demand for a product or service in a particular market. Companies use demand analysis techniques to determine if they can successfully enter a market and generate expected profits to advance their business operations. It also gives a better understanding of the high-demand markets for the company’s offerings, giving them a fair idea on which markets to invest in. Demand analysis is one of the most important considerations for a variety of business decisions including sales forecasting, pricing products/services, marketing and advertisement spending, manufacturing decisions, and expansion planning.

Identifying market opportunities and meeting the market demand can prove to be challenging without appropriate expertise. Request a free brochure to learn how experts at Infiniti Research can assist you with smart solutions that cater to dynamic business needs.

Key factors affecting demand analysis

demand analysis

Common steps in market demand analysis

While there may be several methods of market demand analysis which varies according to the complexity of operations in the business, we have curated some of the commonly used steps for demand analysis:

Market identification

Identifying the specific and target market for the company’s products or services is one of the first market demand analysis steps. Surveys or customer feedbacks can be used to determine the current customer satisfaction levels. Comments indicating dissatisfaction can lead to improvements that will eventually enhance customer satisfaction. Although companies usually identify markets close to their current product line, new industries may be tested for business expansion possibilities.

Business cycle

After identifying the potential markets, the next step is to assess the stage of the business cycle in which that particular market is in. A business cycle ideally comprises of three stages: emerging, plateau and declining. Markets that are in the emerging stage indicate higher consumer demand and low supply of current products or services. The plateau stage depicts the break-even level of the market, where the supply of goods meets the current market demand. A declining stage indicates lagging consumer demand for the company’s goods or services.

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Product Niche

Once the market and their respective business cycles have been reviewed, companies will need to develop products or tailor their services to meet a specific niche in the market. Products must be differentiated from other peers in the market, so that they meet a specific need of consumer demand, creating higher demand for their product or service. It is also advisable to conduct tests in sample markets to determine which of the potential product styles is most preferred by consumers. Companies can also develop their goods in order to prevent competitors from easily duplicating their products or business strategies.

Evaluate competition

A crucial factor of demand analysis is determining the number of competitors in the market and their current market share. Markets in the emerging stage of the business cycle tend to have fewer competitors. This translates to a higher profit margin for your company. Once a market becomes saturated with competing companies and products, fewer profits are achieved and companies will begin to lose money. As markets enter the declining business cycle, companies must conduct a new market demand analysis to find more profitable markets.

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