This process is used to create forecasts of future demand per item/warehouse. This process is performed every period, most suitable at the end, when demand history is complete.
This process can be started when the following prerequisites are met:
The following prerequisites are necessary depending on the way the forecast is made:
The following steps describe the activities included in the process. Each activity can vary depending on the way the forecast is made.
Overview of forecast methods and parameters
The process is started when forecast methods are reviewed to determine whether they should be modified. This includes the selected parameters defined for each item/warehouse forecasted. For more information, see Create Forecast Method.
Delete current forecast
Before new forecasts are made, any previous forecasts can be deleted to facilitate processing. See Delete Forecast.
Accrual forecasts can be entered directly in the system as described in Create Accrual Forecast. Demand history and previous forecasts can be printed to use for this. The printouts can also be used to write down revised forecast values for later entry.
This activity involves transfer of budgeted values to the item/warehouse to create a forecast. For more information, see Create Forecast by Transfer from Sales Budget.
Forecasts can also be created per item/warehouse from annual forecasts and distribution curves. First the annual forecast is entered and then distributed to each period according to the distribution curve selected. See Create Forecast from Annual Forecast and Distribution Curve.
This activity involves creating a forecast from demand history. For this, statistics for each item/warehouse from a specified number of periods are transferred to corresponding periods in the forecasted year. See Create Forecast from Demand History.
This activity involves exploding the forecast for a Forecast Family to derive a separate forecast per item/warehouse. Forecast families are several items grouped together for forecasting purposes and can correspond to a product family. See Create Forecast from Forecast Family.
A forecast check is conducted for manually forecasted items in 'Automatic Forecast. Calculate' (FCS100). This involves checking the demand history on which the forecast calculation is based to make sure the values are reasonable and the mean forecasting errors for the completed forecasts are within specified margins of error.
Items which do not meet the specified conditions for this check activate a forecast alarm. This means the item/warehouse is flagged with the alarm status.
The forecast values for alarm activated items can be corrected in two ways. Corrections can be made on-screen to each item in turn as described in Correct Alarm Activated Item or the alarm activated items can be printed. Using this printout, each item can be corrected in either ‘Automatic Forecast. Open’ (FCS001) or 'Manual Forecast/MDS. Open' (FCS350).
Before the automatic forecast is approved, it can be reviewed. For general forecasts, this can be done three ways.
First, the forecasted item can be printed as described in Print Item Forecast. This allows visual review and comparison of the forecasts to previous period results and/or consumption statistics. Totaling the forecasts per warehouse, item group or product group allows comparison of the item forecast to manually performed group forecasts or budget.
Second, forecasts can be compared to corresponding forecasts from previous periods or years. Forecast comparisons can be made separately for items, item groups product groups and forecast families. For more information, see the following:
This list shows more details on forecast comparisons:
Graphic presentations of separate item forecasts can also be reviewed as described in Display Forecast. Both forecasts and corresponding demand history can be displayed on-screen in this way. In addition, numerical comparisons can be made in 'Manual Forecast/MDS. Open' (FCS350).
After review, adjusting the forecasts may be necessary. This is done for each item/warehouse in 'Manual Forecast/MDS. Open' (FCS350). In addition, several items can be adjusted at the same time by changing the percentage or quantity values in relation to the automatic forecast calculation. See Create Forecast Adjustment.
The final activity in the process involves approving the forecast values after they are checked and reviewed, and any adjustments made. Approval is made by management but does not require updating any entries. The forecast printout can be used as the formal approved forecast.