Job titles: Supply Planner, Demand Planner, Supply Chain or Logistics Coordinator
The role of a Supply & Demand Planner is suited to someone that is analytical and thinks methodically when looking into peaks and troughs in supply chain output via IT systems (MJDI). By managing inventory you can implement accurate distribution plans to ensure that there is a steady level of product availability, maximising output and profits.
By analysing the supply chain process with any retail, manufacturing or 3PL environment, companies can look into areas that need improving, changing or creating. The military use many forms of continuous improvement across numerous channels to make sure that all processes are performing to maximum capacity.
- Develop demand forecasts (operational forecasts) at multiple levels of aggregation for multiple time horizons as part of a demand planning function.
- Review historical trends, research demand drivers, prepare forecast data, develop statistical forecast models, and evaluate forecast results.
- Coordinate cross-functional research activities to reconcile significant variances and refine the forecast model to reflect updated sales and marketing assumptions.
- Use and maintain the Demand Planning software as the primary forecasting system tool.
- Provide input to the Supply Planning organization in developing inventory strategies on existing items, new products, and product phase-outs.
- Closely coordinate and communicate customer action plans with supply planning
- Proactively identify key trends through the analysis of finance KPI reports, highlighting and actioning potential opportunities.
- Champion process improvements, develop alternative/quicker methods of managing the outbound fleet.
- Refined systems and methods to continually improve forecasts so that the company can better anticipate customer needs.
If NOT a 3PL environment;
- Actively develop and lead the relationship with a chosen 3PL, whilst ensuring budgets and costs are continually optimised for the business at all times.
- Work with 3PL provider to identify, address and improve contractual discrepancies and under performance.
- Strong analytical & organisational skills with good decision making and presentation ability
- Experienced in using various IT systems; MJDI, JAMES or other ERP/SAP software
To work within Supply & Demand planning the most important skills or qualifications to have is across IT Systems with two or three years experience. But ideally this will be supported by;
- NVQ or HND in Logistics, Supply Chain or Warehousing
- Mathematics degree, foundation or A-Level
- City and Guilds or BA/BS college degree
These positions are a great stepping stone for a career in Supply Chain Management so are seen as a junior management position that will develop in a customer facing or contract management position.