ToolsGroup Customers Navigate Supply Chain Planning for COVID-19


ToolsGroup customers around the world have had to drastically adjust their supply chain planning in response to COVID-19 demand volatility. Between restrictions on the global movement of people and goods and economic ramifications such as soaring unemployment and reduced consumer spending, these companies are having to dynamically redefine demand forecasts, safety stock levels and promotions.

Here are a few examples of how our customers are using ToolsGroup to respond swiftly and efficiently to COVID-19 supply chain challenges in order to be ready for anything.

Planning for the Unplannable

Franke, a kitchen equipment manufacturer based in Switzerland, has adopted ToolsGroup Service Optimizer 99+ (SO99+) in over 50 global regions. The company has been using different capabilities of ToolsGroup supply chain planning software to minimize supply chain disruption. Examples include commercial overrides, exceptional demand filtering, adding dummy demand and factoring in the partial closure of sales calendars. These functions have enabled Franke to generate a more accurate forecast amid extreme demand changes.

These adjusted forecast values will be shared via the ToolsGroup collaboration hub, where regional markets will have two days to fine-tune the adjusted forecasts for their regions before the commercial overrides are imported to SO99+.

One US-based ToolsGroup manufacturing customer sources parts from a number of Chinese and Italian suppliers. During this time of constrained supply, it is working with these suppliers to understand what supply will look like, balance current inventory position within the manufacturer and distribution network, and model a range of potential downturn in US and European demand.

Consumer demand at fast-food restaurants has changed dramatically. McDonald’s Mesoamérica has used SO99+ to its great advantage, making daily plans as the situation unfolds and generating emergency plans to evaluate inventory.

Meanwhile, some companies are facing surges in demand. Ulabox, the first purely online supermarket in Spain, reacted efficiently to the demand spike they experienced because of COVID-19. In order to face this exceptional demand, the company used SO99+ and its commercial override functionality on a daily basis and reinforced the target service level in all its A-class products. Thanks to SO99+, the company managed this exceptional situation while achieving high service levels even in extremely unfavorable conditions.

Moving Forward

The COVID-19 crisis is affecting each business and region differently, and the situation continues to unfold. As it evolves, these companies are prepared to dynamically adjust in order to be ready for anything. By predicting more behaviors–including new ones that have arisen as a response to the COVID-19 crisis–protecting against surprises by anticipating real-world uncertainty, and performing more efficiently by optimizing supply chain processes in spite of constraints, these companies will find business opportunities amid the COVID-19 crisis and in the post-COVID economy.