The Smart Forecaster
Pursuing best practices in demand planning,
forecasting and inventory optimization
The Min/Max inventory policy is one of four available Replenishment methods in SIO. When the inventory level drops to or below the Min, a replenishment order is generated. The reorder quantity is the number of units needed to raise the stock up to the Max. How do you know your Min/Max settings are working well and triggering replenishment orders at the right time and for the right quantities? If you are like most companies, setting Min/Max levels is based on rules of thumb or simple averaging techniques that don’t expose the trade off curve between service level and inventory cost. This makes it impossible to predict which items are likely to have overstocks and shortages in the future. In this Video Blog we elaborate on this and describe how Smart Inventory Optimization can help.
You know the situation: You work out the best way to manage each inventory item by computing the proper reorder points and replenishment targets, then average demand increases or decreases, or demand volatility changes, or suppliers’ lead times change, or your own costs change.
Managing the inventory across multiple facilities arrayed in multiple echelons can be a huge challenge for any company. The complexity arises from the interactions among the echelons, with demands at the lower levels bubbling up and any shortages at the higher levels cascading down.
For most small-to-medium manufacturers and distributors, single-level or single-echelon inventory optimization is at the cutting edge of logistics practice. Multi-echelon inventory optimization (“MEIO”) involves playing the game at an even higher level and is therefore much less common.