13 Oct 2021
Many businesses will have some form of long-term planning process in place that balances supply and demand over at least the current year, however many struggle to focus enough on this period because short-term issues keep getting in the way. Unfortunately, it is easy for everyone in a business to be running around putting out the latest fire, crashing from one crisis to another, and becoming so stressed that they never have time to work on long-term fixes for problems. The solution? A short-term tactical re-planning process such as Integrated Tactical Planning (ITP).
ITP provides greater discipline for businesses to get the short-term tactical horizon under control. It should be used to complement a long-term business planning process such as Integrated Business Planning (IBP) which looks out monthly over the next two to three years. ITP in contrast is a robust lower-level process that deals with changes by rebalancing product, demand and supply plans weekly to make the monthly long-term plan happen.
One of the most notable differences between a monthly and weekly planning process is cadence. If you're running it weekly, each year there are 52 improvement opportunities, as opposed to 12 at most for a monthly process. The time it takes from starting ITP to the delivery of sustained improvements in performance metrics, working capital, and cross-functional teamwork can be as fast as 12 weeks.
One process lead at an agri-business told us, “The sales lead loves the new process because it has eliminated at least 12 phone calls a day, and the gap we identified four weeks ago between the demand plan and the projected harvest volumes allowed us to purchase from other suppliers early and closed the supply gap cost-effectively.” Integrated Tactical Planning helps foster confidence in execution and credibility from customers who view the organization as a reliable partner.
Of course, if there is only the weekly Integrated Tactical Planning process without the longer horizon monthly process, ultimately, there will be a loss of direction and strategy, so both monthly and weekly processes are needed.
In a nutshell, Integrated Tactical Planning is crucial to running a business successfully because;
Integrated Tactical Planning implemented alongside Integrated Business Planning is a fundamental process that provides businesses with the confidence that their company objectives will be met. Now more than ever, companies need a short-term planning process in place to respond quickly to unforeseen changes that could otherwise leave them vulnerable.
To find out more about Integrated Tactical Planning buy the book here.