The manufacturing panorama of the last few year appears strongly changed due to how the way in which products are designed, manufactured and distributed has changed.
The effects of globalization have determined for many companies in the manufacturing sector the need to adapt to a suddenly open market characterized by high levels of competition, in which rigid strategies "make to stock" have gradually given way to "assembly & configure to order" strategies. To maximize their profits, companies have to adapt their businesses, responding to the increasingly specific needs of “mass customization” of its customers.
In this context, Sales & Operations Planning process (S&OP) are a key element to make the supply chain efficient through a cross-functional collaborative and integrated approach that can facilitate agreement between all departments involved in it, and define future actions in a single Operative Plan.
S&OP processes allow companies to achieve these goals when managed in an "orchestrated" manner, where critical and limited resources, in terms of people, skills, materials, time and money, are balanced and coordinated dynamically in "event driven" scenarios in order to meet the needs of a changing market.