The company will unveil Advanced Planning Solution 4.1 at its Focus user conference in Denver, USA. The announcements are the first of many expected from the company as it gears up to announce a series of new products.
APS 4.1 will support demand consensus forecasting, which allows companies to move away from basing demand forecasts on historical data to instead including input from all the stakeholders involved in the planning process, including internal salespeople, customers and suppliers. Additional new features will include Tactical Network Optimisation, which is designed to allow mid-market companies to model their supply chains for the most efficient enterprise operations.
The new demand consensus features will allow companies to globally reconcile demand forecasts from stakeholders worldwide, Ed Sitarski, JD Edwards vice-president of advanced planning, said. The reconciliation of data from stakeholders is becoming even more critical to companies in the current volatile economic market where manufacturers and other companies cannot always focus on past customer behaviour for future forecasting, he added.
"The whole idea is to use stakeholder knowledge of the future to create a more accurate forecast and eliminate demand uncertainty," Sitarski said. "We can take all the stakeholder data and reconcile the whole thing based on a technique that maximises the impact of all the stakeholders so the forecast is consistent."
The new TNO features are the mid-market equivalent of JD Edwards Strategic Network Optimisation tool already in use by some of its largest customers. It is designed to allow companies to analyse how different supply-chain scenarios - such as moving a distribution centre - will affect a supply chain.