Relational Solutions Blog

Improve Joint Business Planning with Retailers

Posted by Janet Dorenkott

Wed, Dec 10, 2014 @ 09:23 AM

Team_Meeting.jpgIn JBP, joint business planning, it’s important to identify key team members including corporate leadership’s support and involvement. Assuming this has been accomplished, it’s time to begin planning.   


Each company needs to list what their core objectives are. Leaders from both companies need to discuss each of the objectives and address which objectives will provide the most benefit to both companies. Compromises need to be made. Both companies need to get benefit for JBP to work effectively.

When considering various objectives and plans, Companies need to take into consideration many factors that include what happens at the retail store as well as throughout the omni-channel. Many JBP projects find the greatest ROI in trade planning, trade promotion optimization, trade promotion intelligence, etc. This is because it's one of the highest spend areas for consumer goods companies.

In order to determine where the greatest ROI will be found, companies need to identify what data is needed to calculate the ROI for each objective they have. The data needed must be available. POS data may exist in files somewhere, or it may need to be obtained from the retailer or a third party.

Assuming POS can be obtained, where will you get it from? The retailer portal? E-Commerce sites? Will the retailer provide POS in EDI files? Do we need to purchase the raw data from an outside source?

Other data sources also need to be identified. Depending on the objective, those data sources may be internal or may be external. Plan data for example will likely be internal. Weather trend data will be external. Shipment data and forecast data will be internal. Currency conversion data will be external. Competitive market data will be external.

When identifying data sources needed to meet your objectives the following items need to be identified. Relational Solutions offers a spreadsheet to help identify these data sources, data type and volumes. These are important first steps that need to be taken:

  • Identify where the data exists. Internal or external?
  • Is the internal data readily available and what database does it reside in?
  • Determine if data needs to be purchased, who sells it and what the cost is.
  • How much history is available from each source?
  • Define the data elements available.
  • Document the data formats.
  • Consider calendar and week end dates.
  • Discuss how dates will be aligned
  • Determine frequency of data.
  • Discuss granularity of data and how they differ from each other.
  • Define issues that could occur.
  • Estimate data volumes.
  • Define business rules and standardize definitions.
  • Identify calculations needed.

Discuss each of these sources and determine obstacles related to each and how relevant they are to each of your objectives.

Ideally, a first phase would involve an initiative that delivers the greatest ROI with the least amount of difficulty. It is important in any case to have the proper data architecture in place that will provide you with a structure to easily add new data as well as provide you with accurate & reliable data from all the necessary data sources from the onset.

Companies need to consider competitors, the economy, the challenges & benefits when embarking on a JBP partner & initiative.  JBP is not a single project, it’s a commitment by both retailer & supplier to cooperatively increase profits, improve their business relationship, streamline efficiencies and service the end customer better. You need to understand that investments will need to be made by both parties.

Follow our next blog which will discuss presenting your findings.Learn About JBP Solutions

Topics: TradeSmart TPO, trade promotion optimization, JBP Joint Business Planning, joint business planning

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