Guest Blog: Unstoppable Business Performance through Dynamic Planning
March 10, 2015
From my perspective, planning is all about determining how a business can achieve its goals. Your plans should reflect the current state of the business and the allocated resources required for the organization to execute on its goals. It should take into account where you have been, where you are today, and where you want to go. But reality is strikingly different as this blog highlights. Most organizations still refer to their annual budgeting process as “planning.” In contrast, budgeting is just one component of the planning process and should be a natural outcome of it.
Companies that rely on complex planning are faced with yet another issue—it is frustrating, protracted, and resource intensive. Worse yet, the plan becomes obsolete as soon as execution begins. This is further exacerbated due to ever-present dynamism in the modern business climate. Recent volatility in the oil and gas industry, for instance, has forced mid-market players to become intensely focused on their cash position. Likewise, the auto industry is getting ready to be disrupted by Google, Apple, and Tesla. Just these two examples illustrate the problem: when market conditions change your customers churn, your competition sneaks up suddenly, your planning assumptions change, and your profits evaporate, creating great strain on your limited resources.
In order to tackle these challenges, best in class companies are exploring and experimenting ways to be nimble, agile, and resilient. They don’t just plan, they watch for changes to the key drivers and re-calibrate their plans dynamically. They leverage modern technology that helps them be flexible and collaborative. They not only take their full history into account but also create “what-if” scenarios to be smart and forward facing. They are constantly optimizing their resources to best execute on their strategy. Instead of top-down or bottom-up planning, they promote strong collaboration between stakeholders and iterate more frequently. In a nutshell, their plans are always “live,” aligned with their execution, and never obsolete.
These are some of the topics that Paul Hamerman, VP and Principal Analyst at Forrester Research, Inc. will highlight in his upcoming webinar, “Integrated Planning: 5 Keys to Unstoppable Business Performance.” This event, which Anaplan is co-sponsoring with OpenSymmetry, will be held live on March 26, 2015 and explores how best-in-class companies are achieving a superior business performance through adopting an integrated approach to their planning.
Integrated Planning: 5 Keys to Unstoppable Business Performance.