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Sales and Operations Planning brings balance to

the supply chain
If flexibility in your supply chain actually means continuous improvisation,
there is a world to be won. Capgemini Consulting has perfected the art of
Sales & Operations Planning, a holistic management process that brings
insight to complex service chains.
Sales & Operations Planning in
a nutshell
Sales and Operations Planning
(S&OP) shows an organization what
the effect will be of sales targets, at
the front end of the service supply
chain, on operational capacities and
parameters, at the back end. This
simple principle, conscientiously
followed through, brings unprecedented balance and predictability
to the chain. With S&OP, the sales
team becomes aware that the number of accounts they sell may never
exceed the number of accounts that
Operations can service. Vice versa,
Operations can rest assured that they
will never be confronted with an
insurmountable demand, brought on
by overambitious sales representatives. The core of S&OP consists of
a meeting cycle with senior management representatives from each
link in the service chain. These are
authorized to make final decisions
concerning sales targets and capacity
planning. During the S&OP process,
this representative group comes to

When they saw how S&OP was

going to finally bring our service chain
under control, one of our best crisis
managers remarked that the process
would soon become quite boring and
predictable. I told him that predictability
was exactly what we needed - we can
use our creativity for other things.

Willem van Oppen

Chief Procurement Officer, KPN Netherlands

a consensus in terms of projected

demand and planned capacity.
Managing a sobering reality
The development and launch of cutting-edge innovative services is often
a frantic, chaotic process. Especially
in fast moving consumer markets,
brands often put disproportionate
pressure on sales departments. Sales
reps start pushing technologically
advanced, complex products, often
just out of beta testing. These new
services grow organically rather than
having been designed rationally. The
supply chain behind these services
becomes a delicate chain of complex
services and scarce expertise.
Near-sighted managers
Moreover, it is generally extremely
difficult for managers to take the
entire service value chain into
account when they make their
daily decisions. Most of the time it
is impossible for them to even see

just beyond their part of the chain.

Few managers are even encouraged to look beyond their own
island. Most companies distribute
reward based on Key Performance
Indicators (KPIs) of a limited scope:
sales targets, cost targets, deadlines
and go-lives. The benefit of S&OP
is that it brings the entire chain of
dependencies into perspective and
makes it quantifiable. Someone may
make a fixed target and get a bonus,
but that might present someone else
with a problem, not to mention the
company as a whole. S&OP brings
this kind of dependency to light. The
excellent service chain will therefore
strive to implement this management
process. However, because it effects
KPIs as well as reward structures, it
is not for the faint-hearted and
requires top-down leadership
and change management.

Tactical insight
The value adding management process mostly affects mid-term tactical
planning. Instead of short term flexible planning, which generally means
a lot of improvisation and stress, you
want to have a medium term focus,
which fixes lead times and links service targets to service capacity.
S&OP for the first time in a service environment
Together with KPN, one of
Capgeminis major clients, S&OP has
now for the first time been implemented in a service supply chain.
KPN receives attention from business
schools and fellow service providers
all over the world: theyre anxious to
see how it was done, and are interested to see the results.

The effect of Sales &

Operations Planning on the
supply chain is so profound,
I think it will soon become a
license to operate if you want
to lead in markets like ours.
Implementing it is not for the
faint of heart; it requires a
complete thinkthrough of your
supply chain and it requires that
managers in the chain change
the way they see the business.
S&OP affects incentives,
KPIs and responsibilities so
its implementation demands
strong leadership. But without
it, the complexity of this kind of
services invites unacceptable

About Capgemini
With more than 115,000 people in
40 countries, Capgemini is one of the
worlds foremost providers of consulting,
technology and outsourcing services.
The Group reported 2010 global revenues
of EUR 8.7 billion Together with its
clients, Capgemini creates and delivers
business and technology solutions
that fit their needs and drive the results
they want. A deeply multicultural
organization, Capgemini has developed
its own way of working, the Collaborative
Business ExperienceTM, and draws on
Rightshore, its worldwide delivery

Capgemini Consulting is the Global

Strategy and Transformation Consulting
brand of the Capgemini Group,
specializing in advising and supporting
organizations in transforming their
business, from the development of
innovative strategy through to execution,
with a consistent focus on sustainable
results. Capgemini Consulting proposes
to leading companies and governments
a fresh approach which uses innovative
methods, technology and the talents of
over 3,600 consultants worldwide.
For more information: www.

Rightshore is a trademark belonging to Capgemini

Arno van Steveninck

CFO for KPNs Consumer division

2011 Capgemini. All rights reserved. Rightshore is a registered trademark belonging to Capgemini.
Capgemini Consulting is the strategy and transformation consulting brand of Capgemini Group


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P.O. box 2575 - 3500 GN Utrecht
Tel. +31 30 689 26 28