For many years, supply chain managers aspired to maximize efficiency and cost containment, a goal reflected in their processes and enabling technologies. Globalization extended the reach of many supply chains in pursuit of lower costs, but apart from the occasional hiccup, the reliability of key resources including labor, raw materials, and transportation capacity made it all work.

All of that has changed. The past few years have featured unprecedented turmoil in all of these resources, as well as the emergence of new sales and delivery channels, significant impacts from digitization, and elevated customer expectations. Supply chain managers were thrown into a reactive mode as sources of supply were suddenly cut off, container prices soared, labor became scarce, and ecommerce mushroomed.

In the ensuing months, many products once in short supply suddenly became abundant once logjams were cleared, leading to markdowns and losses. In the summer of 2022, major retailers were reporting inventory levels as much as 70% higher than the same quarter the year before.

But it didn’t have to be that way. A well-constructed supply planning strategy that synchronizes supply resources, inventory, and production capacity; can better manage all that volatility, mitigating the impacts and identifying a better path forward. It enables supply chain managers to access greater insights, make more informed decisions, develop multiple scenario plans, and collaborate more efficiently, so supply chains can weather the storms with far greater resilience.

That’s good news, because while the most acute impacts of the pandemic on the supply chain have since lessened, analysts are nearly unanimous in their assertion that volatility is here to stay. To operate in this dynamic environment, a reactive mode won’t work. Supply planning processes must be more proactive, flexible, nuanced, and resilient.

Time to Ditch Outdated Technology

No matter where your production planning capabilities currently lie on the maturity curve, one thing is certain: the legacy planning tools based on those old “givens” are likely making it hard to get out of reactive mode. Outdated systems and patched-together fixes were never built for the sort of complexity and nuance required to respond to this dynamic demand. Growing your planning maturity requires the right mindset, the right processes as well as the right technology.

To keep the momentum moving forward, you’ll want to be able to transition smoothly from your current supply planning environment to one capable of a more advanced, dynamic approach. That’s why John Galt Solutions’ Atlas Planning Platform and its Supply application are built to take you right from where you are now to where you need to be, in the short, medium, and long term.

So, if you’re just getting started using a true supply planning solution for the first time, it can help you access valuable, tangible benefits quickly with a lower level of complexity. You’ll establish foundational capabilities such as attainable plans and basic fill-rates. If you already have that foundation, or when you’re ready to level up, you can start to unlock new efficiencies and key abilities such as capable-to-promise with the same Atlas application. Then, when you’re ready for the most advanced features, you can begin optimizing planning functions, experimenting, and enabling advanced scenarios to create a highly resilient and profitable plan.

eBook: A Guide to Balancing Tradeoffs to Optimize Your Supply Planning

One of the things that makes John Galt Solutions different is the ability to start from wherever you are now, so you don’t lose valuable time making the transition to a new platform. We grow together as your business does, guiding and supporting you through all the changes and increasing business complexity while also helping you steadily increase the maturity of your supply planning.

The challenges your supply chains have endured over the past few years are not going away. It’s critical to stop being reactive and tactical in your planning and mature your supply planning capabilities to remain competitive in a fast-evolving marketplace.