Is there any more mysterious role in the supply chain than that of the demand planner?
Supply Chain Digest believes the answer is No, for a variety of reasons.
Those include the following:
• Anecdotal evidence indicates that there are significant differences in how the demand planning role is structured, compensated, developed and more between companies.
• Demand planners can often commit companies to millions or even tens of millions of dollars in terms of inventory, capacity and more. Some experts are saying that given this responsibility, greater focus needs to be placed there in terms of policies, recruitment, development and many other aspects of the demand planning role.
"Our demand planners have huge influence on our inventory plans, capacity plans, and so in the end our top and bottom lines," a director of supply chain planning for a personal care products company recently told SCDigest. "But our CEO has no idea who any of these people are, or really what they do. It is a definite disconnect in the supply chain."
To help bring some clarification to these important issues, Chief Supply Chain Officer Insights, the research arm of SCDigest, has launched a major research project titled the Demand Planner Benchmark Study 2013.
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The research will answer the following types of questions:
• What are the roles, skill sets, career paths, and more for demand planners today?
• What are current staffing levels relative to need?
• How is demand planner productivity changing?
"This research is really based on the many conversations we have had with supply chain managers and executives relative to how little understood the role of demand planner really is," said SCDigest editor Dan Gilmore. "We are confident this benchmark study will shine a lot of light on a number of questions that companies will be very interest in seeing where they stand versus others."
(Supply Chain Trends and Issues Article - Continued Below)