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JD Edwards Forecasting Implementation for Manufacturer

Future-proofed Production Insight

Overview

With nearly 2,500 employees and 50 manufacturing facilities in 17 states and China, a major manufacturing company was approaching 70 years in business. Using JD Edwards across the enterprise, they decided to take advantage of the forecasting capabilities to improve the quality of their demand planning. At the time, the manufacturer’s demand horizon was built on existing sales orders. This made them vulnerable to changes in customer demand since they were primarily a long lead time manufacturer.

Customer demand changes could lead to interruptions in manufacturing production, high material stock levels, and the need to expedite orders for additional materials. All of these potential issues had severe potential impacts on the company’s operating efficiency and costs, as well as their customers’ satisfaction. With a JD Edwards forecasting implementation, the manufacturer could more confidently forecast customer demand and increase the stability of their operation.

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Challenge

A global manufacturer’s demand horizon was built on existing sales orders, making them vulnerable to changes in customer demand.

Solution

The manufacturer turned to Surety Systems to develop a JD Edwards forecasting implementation process that would meet production needs.

Result

Surety Systems’ expert JD Edwards consultant was able to train the manufacturer’s team, perform setup, and validate results of the new forecasting model.

The Challenge

This large manufacturer turned to Surety Systems to help initiate their JD Edwards Forecasting implementation across the company. However, because the company operated in independent business units and had more than thirty other JDE modules, it was determined that a unified, company-wide implementation and roll-out was impractical.

Instead, the company decided to work towards a successful implementation in one manufacturing operation. By narrowing the scope of the initial JD Edwards forecasting implementation, the company could focus on a solid forecast process that would best predict production needs for their specific manufacturing model. They could then champion the proven model across the rest of the company.

The Solution

One of their independent manufacturing plants was selected as the initial pilot facility. Surety Systems provided a senior-level JD Edwards consultant with extensive experience in manufacturing assessment, planning, and forecasting. This seasoned consultant began the engagement with a week-long on-site assessment of the manufacturing operation. Through that assessment, the consultant realized the plant could only predict two weeks into the future with confidence—confirming the need to increase their forecasting ability.

The JD Edwards forecasting solution comes equipped with twelve different forecasting algorithms, allowing for a customized approach based on the specific operation. Surety Systems’ JD Edwards consultant presented his observations to the key stakeholders and, together, determined the five algorithms they would employ. The consultant developed a straightforward process that produced an accurate six-month look at demand, taking seasonality and sales trend history into consideration.

One challenge encountered while trying to accumulate an accurate look at sales and production history was related to part numbers. Historically, the parts numbering process had been to assign a new number with any change to the part, which prevented an aggregate view of sales over time. To increase the company’s insight into their parts and the corresponding materials ordering needs, Surety Systems’ consultant worked with the company analysts to develop a parts matching process that would match similar parts history and create a consolidated historical view.

The Result

In just three weeks, the Surety Systems consultant was able to train the large manufacturing company’s team, perform setup, and validate results of the new JD Edwards forecasting implementation. In addition, the company now had a proven model they could take to the remainder of their facilities with the confidence of successful performance.

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