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Demand Planning Software


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Infoplus logo
 
Infoplus is an inventory management solution for small to midsize organizations in industries including consumer goods, electronics, food and beverage, retail, pharmaceuticals and more. The system is offered primarily as a web-based... Read More
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Infoplus is an inventory management solution for small to midsize organizations in industries including consumer goods, electronics, food and beverage, retail, pharmaceuticals and more. The system is offered primarily as a web-based... Read More
 
WISE logo
 
In addition to a warehouse management application, Royal 4 offers enterprise-level planning solution that uses financial information from across your entire corporation. Royal 4 offers both on-premise and hosted software options.
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In addition to a warehouse management application, Royal 4 offers enterprise-level planning solution that uses financial information from across your entire corporation. Royal 4 offers both on-premise and hosted software options.
 
Fishbowl Inventory logo
 
Fishbowl Inventory integrates QuickBooks in an slick, easy to navigate user interface that can help predict future inventory levels. Reports are easy to use, customizable, and easy to access through the “favorites” feature.
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Fishbowl Inventory integrates QuickBooks in an slick, easy to navigate user interface that can help predict future inventory levels. Reports are easy to use, customizable, and easy to access through the “favorites” feature.
 
BluJay Solutions Procurement logo
 
With LeanTMS by LeanLogistics, shippers can optimize loads and reduce unnecessary mileage. LeanTMS offers a flexible system and supports almost any size operation.
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With LeanTMS by LeanLogistics, shippers can optimize loads and reduce unnecessary mileage. LeanTMS offers a flexible system and supports almost any size operation.
 
SAP - SCM logo
 
The forecasting algorithms within SAP’s supply chain system help users to effectively reduce inventory and costs by finding the best model. The application also integrates across the entire supply network for increased accuracy.
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The forecasting algorithms within SAP’s supply chain system help users to effectively reduce inventory and costs by finding the best model. The application also integrates across the entire supply network for increased accuracy.

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Kenandy Cloud ERP logo
 
Kenandy is a comprehensive cloud-based ERP solution created for companies that design, manufacture, or distribute products. It helps businesses manage core processes including order-to-cash, planning and production, procurement, TPM,... Read More
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Kenandy is a comprehensive cloud-based ERP solution created for companies that design, manufacture, or distribute products. It helps businesses manage core processes including order-to-cash, planning and production, procurement, TPM,... Read More
 
Slingshot Enterprise Business Suite logo
 
With more than 30 years in the ERP industry, Slingshot Enterprise Business Suite is a highly flexible demand planning and forecasting solution for any industry. This system is available as either on-premise or SaaS.
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With more than 30 years in the ERP industry, Slingshot Enterprise Business Suite is a highly flexible demand planning and forecasting solution for any industry. This system is available as either on-premise or SaaS.
 
Atlas Planning Suite logo
 
Atlas Planning Suite, provided by John Galt Solutions, is a supply chain management platform designed to suit the needs of scaling businesses in various industries. Companies in manufacturing, agriculture, industrial equipment, hospitality... Read More
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Atlas Planning Suite, provided by John Galt Solutions, is a supply chain management platform designed to suit the needs of scaling businesses in various industries. Companies in manufacturing, agriculture, industrial equipment, hospitality... Read More
 
Infor Supply Chain Management logo
 
With over 70,000 customers across the globe, Infor is a leading provider of contract management solutions today. A great fit for buyers looking for a supply chain management suite with advanced contract consolidation features.
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With over 70,000 customers across the globe, Infor is a leading provider of contract management solutions today. A great fit for buyers looking for a supply chain management suite with advanced contract consolidation features.
 
Conga Novatus Contract Management logo
 
Novatus Contract Lifecycle Management is a comprehensive solution featuring demand planning and forecasting. Novatus integrates with SalesForce CRM, Seal Software, and Coupa, as well as DocuSign for e-signatures.
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Novatus Contract Lifecycle Management is a comprehensive solution featuring demand planning and forecasting. Novatus integrates with SalesForce CRM, Seal Software, and Coupa, as well as DocuSign for e-signatures.

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Forecast Server logo
 
Forecast Server, by Vanguard, is a supply chain management tool developed for scaling enterprise companies. Retailers, distributors, engineering firms, pharmaceutical manufacturers, energy companies, software companies, and various... Read More
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Forecast Server, by Vanguard, is a supply chain management tool developed for scaling enterprise companies. Retailers, distributors, engineering firms, pharmaceutical manufacturers, energy companies, software companies, and various... Read More
 
SCP 4.0 logo
 
SCP 4.0 is uniquely designed to help organizations optimize their inventory management. Advanced features include time-phased demand planning and multiple forecasting formulas to keep your inventory on track.
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SCP 4.0 is uniquely designed to help organizations optimize their inventory management. Advanced features include time-phased demand planning and multiple forecasting formulas to keep your inventory on track.
 
TECSYS EliteSeries logo
 
TECSYS offers comprehensive supply chain management solutions for midsized to large distribution companies. Its scalable, Web-based warehouse management system offers deep business intelligence and analytics capabilities.
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TECSYS offers comprehensive supply chain management solutions for midsized to large distribution companies. Its scalable, Web-based warehouse management system offers deep business intelligence and analytics capabilities.
 
BlueCherry logo
 
BlueCherry is an enterprise resource planning (ERP) suite featuring modules for omnichannel planning, product lifecycle management (PLM), shop floor control, logistics, e-commerce, finance and electronic data interchange. It is suitable... Read More
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BlueCherry is an enterprise resource planning (ERP) suite featuring modules for omnichannel planning, product lifecycle management (PLM), shop floor control, logistics, e-commerce, finance and electronic data interchange. It is suitable... Read More
 
Lead Commerce logo
 
Lead Commerce is an integrated order management suite that offers applications like inventory management, merchandise planning, and customer relationship management. The solution helps small and midsize businesses streamline and automate... Read More
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Lead Commerce is an integrated order management suite that offers applications like inventory management, merchandise planning, and customer relationship management. The solution helps small and midsize businesses streamline and automate... Read More

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Supply Chain Planning & Optimization logo
 
Quintiq's powerful Supply Chain Planning & Optimization (SCP&O) platform was designed with flexibility and problem solving in mind, smoothing any issues with planning and job scheduling without making any changes to the core system... Read More
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Quintiq's powerful Supply Chain Planning & Optimization (SCP&O) platform was designed with flexibility and problem solving in mind, smoothing any issues with planning and job scheduling without making any changes to the core system... Read More
 
Telogis Route logo
 
Established in 2001, Telogis Route provides a full, end-to-end Transportation Management platform for fleet-based companies of all sizes. This powerful solution includes features such as job scheduling, status tracking, a rules engine,... Read More
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Established in 2001, Telogis Route provides a full, end-to-end Transportation Management platform for fleet-based companies of all sizes. This powerful solution includes features such as job scheduling, status tracking, a rules engine,... Read More
 
Kinaxis RapidResponse logo
 
Delivered as a set of configurable applications, Kinaxis RapidResponse is a supply chain management solution that helps large enterprises with planning. RapidResponse offers organizations the supply chain planning and analytics capabilities... Read More
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Delivered as a set of configurable applications, Kinaxis RapidResponse is a supply chain management solution that helps large enterprises with planning. RapidResponse offers organizations the supply chain planning and analytics capabilities... Read More
 
Pronto Xi logo
 
Pronto Xi by Pronto Software is a fully integrated enterprise resource planning (ERP) suite that provides core applications, such as financial accounting and business intelligence, alongside sales and marketing modules, supply chain... Read More
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Pronto Xi by Pronto Software is a fully integrated enterprise resource planning (ERP) suite that provides core applications, such as financial accounting and business intelligence, alongside sales and marketing modules, supply chain... Read More
 
Apprise logo
 
Apprise offers organizations an enterprise resource management (ERP) and supply chain management solution developed for consumer goods manufacturers, importers and distributors. It is suitable for companies operating internationally... Read More
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Apprise offers organizations an enterprise resource management (ERP) and supply chain management solution developed for consumer goods manufacturers, importers and distributors. It is suitable for companies operating internationally... Read More

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Buyer's Guide

by Lisa Hedges,
Content Analyst
Last Updated: July 20, 2017


Demand planning and forecasting software is used across industries by businesses of all sizes. The market for this software is continuously growing, and demand planning technology continues to evolve. Some vendors offer a complete supply chain planning suite with features such as inventory and replenishment planning, while others offer demand planning as an add-on or standalone feature.

This buyer’s guide aims to help you understand the features and functionality of demand planning and forecasting software in order to help you during the software selection process.

Here's what we'll cover:

What Is Demand Planning and Forecasting Software?
Common Features of Demand Planning and Forecasting Software
Market Trends to Understand
Benefits of Demand Planning and Forecasting Software
Evaluating Demand Planning and Forecasting Software

What Is Demand Planning and Forecasting Software?

Demand planning software allows organizations to minimize waste by tracking trends that will affect future demand. This type of system accomplishes the task by improving forecasting governance in order to eliminate errors or biases in the data and also by reducing data latency, which makes real-time demand planning possible.

In addition to procurement software and strategic sourcing software, demand planning systems are an important, cost-cutting element of supply chain management software.

Common Features of Demand Planning and Forecasting Software

Organizations can achieve two key objectives with the help of demand planning tools: an improvement in demand forecast accuracy and greater control over demand shaping.

Historical analysis Cross-functional or multi-dimensional forecasting processes analyze the historical demand for an individual product along with broader macro- and micro-economic trends to deliver an accurate forecast to supply chain executives.
Data separation The software gathers a wide range of data to improve past and future demand analysis. Filtering and separation occurs by product, customer, season and market information.
Demand shaping capacity The software factors in scheduling data related to promotions, advertising, planned product launches and upcoming competitor activity, accumulating and displaying detailed plans for future marketing campaigns as well as the projected effects on awareness, demand and revenue that will accompany them.
“What-if” analysis With all the information in the system, the software can perform a series of scenarios and simulations based on “what-if” factors. Based on the results of these what-if simulations, potential deviations from planned demand can be communicated to the necessary areas of the supply chain in order to adjust shipments or production.
Supply chain communication Demand planning systems communicates with other elements of the SCM system to renegotiate replenishment scheduling through capacity planning. This prevents unnecessary oversupply and cost inefficiencies by reducing inventory carrying costs and excess inventory write-offs.

Market Trends to Understand

Software as a service (SaaS). Many businesses are now opting for cloud-based systems that are hosted by the vendor and enable users to run the software entirely via web browser. Vendors that provide cloud-based demand planning and forecasting software include Fishbowl, SAP, S2K and Infor.

Digital monitoring. With the increasing globalization of the supply chain, companies face challenges such as delays, longer delivery times, degraded quality and higher costs. To tackle these challenges and maintain visibility and connectivity across the entire supply chain, many demand planning and forecasting software solutions offer a digital monitoring feature that provides real-time updates.

Artificial intelligence. The supply chain for global companies is complex and constantly evolving, which means it is susceptible to errors that can cost millions, if not billions of dollars. To combat this, some vendors are introducing features that are capable of finding and correcting both historic and live supply chain data. For example, vendor Rulex introduced an AI software solution in September 2016 that can automatically detect and correct errors in supply chain data.

Increased demand for third party integrations. Rather than having to purchase an entirely new system that covers every aspect of business operations, many buyers now seek solutions that allow them to easily import data, such as procurement, sales and operations, from their pre-existing software into the new solution without requiring extra manual effort.

Analytics. Demand planning and forecasting software vendors use different predictive models to improve the accuracy of demand forecasts. As a result, business intelligence software vendors with predictive analytics capabilities have started offering demand planning and forecasting software for supply chain application. For example, Qlik and Board BI have expanded their product offerings for the demand planning software market.

Benefits of Demand Planning and Forecasting Software

Demand planning and forecasting software can yield many benefits for organizations. These benefits include (but are not limited to):

Increased efficiency. A demand planning and forecasting solution helps increase the efficiency of a company’s supply chain and operations, improve capacity and manage inventory levels. These tools can also generate a demand plan based on historical data and predict future demand.

Improved collaboration. A demand planning system can help improve communication between a company’s supply chain and other areas of operations, including sales, marketing and finance. This can lead to the creation of action plans for different scenarios to enhance overall productivity.

Cost control. Demand forecasts reduce costs by preparing effective inventory-stocking plans. This feature prevents inventory overstocking while focusing on high-profit inventory items.

Trend analysis. In addition to controlling costs, trend analysis features can generate forecasts by capturing historical data and combining it with data related to seasonal variation and promotions. These forecasts can help prevent sales loss due to lack of inventory.

Evaluating Demand Planning and Forecasting Software

Evaluating demand planning and forecasting software requires an assessment of the functionality and its value to the planning process. It also requires an understanding of the efficiency, accuracy, and relevance of the data that is provided, since that data is key to the effectiveness of the system.

Key considerations when selecting demand planning software include:

  • What data does it collect and interpret?
  • How often is the data collected?
  • Will it be used by itself, or in conjunction with supply chain planning or a comprehensive SCM system? Is it compatible with legacy systems?

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