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I was recently in a company that had 42 number one projects, many of which required the same resources to develop, manage, and implement. At best, companies can accomplish four or five major initiatives in a year. That’s why management must set the priorities and provide the resources for only a few critical initiatives in order for them to be delivered complete and on time. The initiatives, projects, resource requirements, schedules, and priorities all are included in the S&OP packet for management’s review, action and approval. The integrated reconciliation review meeting follows the supply review meeting by a couple of days. The inputs for the integrated reconciliation review meeting include the issues raised from the product management, demand, and supply meetings, the financial evaluation of the new plans and changes to the plan from the previous month, and the alternative proposals developed in the product, demand, and supply steps (figure 2). The integrated reconciliation meeting of the sales and operations planning process develops the financial evaluation of the plans, identifies the gaps to the strategic and business plans, develops scenarios around those gaps, and publishes the S&OP packet that will be used in the management review meeting. The S&OP packet is a critical component and requires some explanation. The packet contains the essential management information required for decision making. It is not a spreadsheet data dump but rather a packet of visual information that clearly spells out the issues and frames the decisions required (figure 3). The packet typically contains a KPI dashboard that provides management with a quick visual indication of business performance. Also in the packet is the documentation of a family-by-family summary of the trends, changes, assumptions, financial impacts of the changes, and appropriate recommendations. Gaps to the business and strategic plans are visually displayed with the supporting information documented as well as the recommended actions noted. The packet outputs in figure 3 are from the Oliver Wight ESOPT presentation tool, and will be discussed in greater detail in the next article of the S&OP series. Experience has shown that where the sales and operations planning process is viable and effective, companies have named an S&OP coordinator to manage the process and the data. In effect, this person acts as the quality assurance manager for the S&OP process. The S&OP coordinator orchestrates the integrated reconciliation meeting, oversees the issue resolution process, and liaises closely with the coordinators and owners of each step of the S&OP process. The coordinator selects the integrated reconciliation issues, facilitates the appropriate players to develop scenarios that reoptimize the business and develops gap closing solutions. He/she orchestrates the discussions, both one-on-one and in small groups, and coordinates the development of the agenda for the senior management meeting to ensure an integrated and seamless process. This individual requires a broad-based experience (exposure to multiple aspects of the business) and must view issues from a “business” perspective. The sixth and final article in the S&OP series will address the management business review meeting. November 07 Businessexcellence 13 John E. Schorr, a principal with Oliver Wight, is one of the leading experts in sales & operations planning (S&P). Prior to joining Oliver Wight, John was involved in the implementation of MRP II at Haworth, where he was vice president of manufacturing, and Steelcase, where he was director of purchasing. Strategicmanagement

14 November 07 Businessexcellence Marc Schupan, president of Schupan & Sons, and his three divisional presidents, tell Martin Ashcroft about the partnership culture that helps the business by helping the customer Aheadofthepuck