Smart Software Announces Strategic Partnership with Sage for Inventory Optimization and Demand Forecasting

Belmont, MA, February  2024 –Smart Software, a global provider of next-generation cloud-based inventory optimization, demand planning, and forecasting solutions, announces today their strategic partnership with Sage.

This collaboration brings Smart IP&O (Inventory Planning and Optimization) into the latest cloud and on-premises versions of Sage X3, Sage 300, and Sage 100. By seamlessly integrating strategic planning with operational execution, users can eliminate reactive inventory planning and forecast guesswork by accurately calibrating risks, tradeoffs, and consequences at scale with Smart IP&O.

Sage is the leader in accounting, financial, HR and payroll technology for small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs). Customers trust Sage’s comprehensive suite of finance, HR, and Supply Chain software to streamline processes and simplify operational tasks. This integrated approach to solving business challenges ensures seamless interactions and delivers valuable insights to SMBs, reinforcing Sage’s position as a leader in the industry.

“Smart Software helps our customers by delivering insightful business analytics for inventory modeling and forecasting that drive ordering and replenishment in the latest version of Sage. With Smart IP&O, our customers gain a means to shape inventory strategy to align with the business objectives while empowering their planning teams to reduce inventory and improve service,” says   Regina Crowshaw, Director of ISV Strategy, Sales, and Programs at Sage.

“Sage drives innovation and fosters business growth by delivering insightful solutions designed to enable organizations to scale and succeed. By leveraging the capabilities of Smart’s field-proven demand forecasting and inventory planning solutions, Sage is poised to supply the necessary expertise to assess needs, establish objectives, and craft the underlying business strategies key for ensuring widespread adoption and deriving maximum benefit.  We look ahead to what we can accomplish together, and we look forward to our joint success”, says Greg Hartunian, President and CEO at Smart Software.

About Smart Software, Inc.

Founded in 1981, Smart Software, Inc. is a leader in providing businesses with enterprise-wide demand forecasting, planning, and inventory optimization solutions.  Smart Software’s demand forecasting and inventory optimization solutions have helped thousands of users worldwide, including customers such as Disney, Hitachi, Arizona Public Service, and Ameren. Smart’s Inventory Planning & Optimization Platform, Smart IP&O, provides demand planners the tools to handle sales seasonality, promotions, new and aging products, multi-dimensional hierarchies, and intermittently demanded service parts and capital goods items. It also provides inventory managers with accurate estimates of the optimal inventory and safety stock required to meet future orders and achieve desired service levels.  Smart Software is headquartered in Belmont, Massachusetts, and our website is www.smartcorp.com.

About Sage Corporation

Sage exists to knock down barriers so everyone can thrive, starting with the millions of Small and Mid-Sized Businesses served by us, our partners, and accountants. Customers trust our finance, HR, and payroll software to make work and money flow. By digitizing business processes and relationships with customers, suppliers, employees, banks, and governments, our digital network connects SMBs, removing friction and delivering insights. Knocking down barriers also means we use our time, technology, and experience to tackle digital inequality, economic inequality and the climate crisis.


For more information, please contact Smart Software, Inc., Four Hill Road, Belmont, MA 02478.
Phone: 1-800-SMART-99 (800-762-7899); FAX: 1-617-489-2748; E-mail: info@smartcorp.com

 

 

Why Inventory Planning Shouldn’t Rely Exclusively on Simple Rules of Thumb

For too many companies, a critical piece of data fact-finding ― the measurement of demand uncertainty ― is handled by simple but inaccurate rules of thumb.  For example, demand planners will often compute safety stock by a user-defined multiple of the forecast or historical average.  Or they may configure their ERP to order more when on hand inventory gets to 2 x the average demand over the lead time for important items and 1.5 x for less important ones. This is a huge mistake with costly consequences.

The choice of multiple ends up being a guessing game.  This is because no human being can compute exactly how much inventory to stock considering all the uncertainties.  Multiples of the average lead time demand are simple to use but you can never know whether the multiple used is too large or too small until it is too late.  And once you know, all the information has changed, so you must guess again and then wait and see how the latest guess turns out.  With each new day, you have new demand, new details on lead times, and the costs may have changed.  Yesterday’s guess, no more matter how educated is no longer relevant today.  Proper inventory planning should be void of inventory and forecast guesswork.  Decisions must be made with incomplete information but guessing is not the way to go.

Knowing how much to buffer requires a fact-based statistical analysis that can accurately answer questions such as:

  • How much extra stock is needed to improve service levels by 5%
  • What the hit to on-time delivery will be if inventory is reduced by 5%
  • What service level target is most profitable.
  • How will the stockout risk be impacted by the random lead times we face.

Intuition can’t answer these questions, doesn’t scale across thousands of parts, and is often wrong.  Data, probability math and modern software are much more effective. Winging it is not the path to sustained excellence.

 

Using Key Performance Predictions to Plan Stocking Policies

I can’t imagine being an inventory planner in spare parts, distribution, or manufacturing and having to create safety stock levels, reorder points, and order suggestions without using key performance predictions of service levels, fill rates, and inventory costs:

Using Key Performance Predictions to Plan Stocking Policies Iventory

Smart’s Inventory Optimization solution generates out-of-the-box key performance predictions that dynamically simulate how your current stocking policies will perform against possible future demands.  It reports on how often you’ll stock out, the size of the stockouts, the value of your inventory, holding costs, and more.  It lets you proactively identify problems before they occur so you can take corrective action in the short term. You can create what-if scenarios by setting targeted service levels and modifying lead times so you an see the predicted impact of these changes before committing to it.

For example,

  • You can see if a proposed move from the current service level of 90% to a targeted service level of 97% is financially advantageous
  • You can automatically identify if a different service level target is even more profitable to your business that the proposed target.
  • You can see exactly how much you’ll need to increase your reorder points to accommodate a longer lead time.

 

If you aren’t equipping planners with the right tools, they’ll be forced to set stocking policies, safety stock levels, and create demand forecasts in Excel or with outdated ERP functionality.   Not knowing how policies are predicted to perform will leave your company ill equipped to properly allocate inventory.  Contact us today to learn how we can help!

 

Smart Software has been honored with the Epicor ISV Marketing Excellence Award

Belmont, MA, October 2023 – Smart Software is pleased to announce that it is the recipient of the Epicor ISV Marketing Excellence Award, recognizing Smart’s outstanding performance and contributions in driving successful marketing initiatives, campaigns, and innovation.

Pete Reynolds, Smart Software’s Vice President of Channel Sales, will receive the Marketing Excellence Award during the ISV Partner Briefing at Ignite. The event will take place in Dallas on Monday, October 23, 2023, from 10:45 am – 12:30 pm at the Gaylord Texan Convention Center.

Greg Hartunian, Smart Software’s CEO stated, “This recognition is a testament to the collaboration between the Smart and Epicor teams. Together, we’ve raised a great deal of awareness about the benefits of better inventory planning and forecasting.  We look forward to helping more customers in the year to come and launching our partnership to new heights.”

Smart Software is an Epicor Platinum Partner, the highest designation in the ISV Partner Program.

 

About Smart Software, Inc.

Founded in 1981, Smart Software, Inc. is a leader in providing businesses with enterprise-wide demand forecasting, planning, and inventory optimization solutions.  Smart Software’s demand forecasting and inventory optimization solutions have helped thousands of users worldwide, including customers such as Disney, Hitachi, Arizona Public Service, Ameren, and The American Red Cross.  Smart’s Inventory Planning & Optimization Platform, Smart IP&O, provides demand planners the tools to handle sales seasonality, promotions, new and aging products, multi-dimensional hierarchies, and intermittently demanded service parts and capital goods items.  It also provides inventory managers with accurate estimates of the optimal inventory and safety stock required to meet future orders and achieve desired service levels.  Smart Software is headquartered in Belmont, Massachusetts, and our website is www.smartcorp.com.


For more information, please contact Smart Software, Inc., Four Hill Road, Belmont, MA 02478.
Phone: 1-800-SMART-99 (800-762-7899); FAX: 1-617-489-2748; E-mail: info@smartcorp.com

 

 

What is Inventory Planning? A Brief Dictionary of Inventory-Related Terms

Inventory Control concerns the management of physical goods, focusing on an accurate and up-to-the-minute count of every item in inventory and where it is located, as well as efficient retrieval of items. Relevant technologies include computer databases, barcoding, Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), and the use of robots for retrieval.

Inventory Management aims to execute the inventory policy defined by the company. Inventory Management is often accomplished using Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, which generate purchase orders, production orders, and reporting that details current inventory on hand, incoming, and up for order.

Inventory Planning sets operational policy details, such as item-specific reorder points and order quantities, and predicts future demand and supplier lead times. Important components of an inventory planning process include what-if scenarios for netting out on-hand inventory, analyzing how changes to demand, lead times, and stocking policies will impact ordering, as well as managing exceptions and contingencies.

Inventory Optimization utilizes an analytical process that computes values for inventory planning parameters (e.g., reorder points and order quantities) that optimize a numerical goal or “objective function” without violating a numerical constraint. For instance, an objective function might be to achieve the lowest possible inventory operating cost (defined as the sum of inventory holding costs, ordering costs, and shortage costs), and the constraint might be to achieve a fill rate of at least 90%. Using a mathematical model of the inventory system and probability forecasts of item demand, inventory optimization can quickly and automatically suggest how to best manage thousands of inventory items.