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Why SAP IBP Needs Customizable Gen AI Solutions, Not Pre-Packaged SaaS Products

July 28, 2023 | Manju Devadas

Blog / Why SAP IBP Needs Customizable Gen AI Solutions, Not Pre-Packaged SaaS Products

SAP

SAP Integrated Business Planning (IBP) has consistently been a key player in the supply chain planning space, offering extensive capabilities. However, a shifting landscape of market dynamics and increasingly complex business scenarios necessitate more advanced analytical functionalities.

In a recent publication titled “How SAP Failed The Supply Chain Leader,” the shortcomings of SAP IBP were dissected. While the original content has been taken down from the official website, the text continues to float around on the internet and has been examined by business leaders across industries. The study brought to light issues including evolutionary limitations, an inability to adapt, struggles with network interoperability, and hurdles in co-innovation projects.

While these revelations pinpoint SAP IBP’s constraints, the answer is not to jettison this robust system altogether, as several vendors might advocate. We firmly believe the key lies in fortifying its capabilities to meet today’s supply chain planning requirements.

Planning in a Box, our data platform solution, enhances the capabilities of SAP IBP by marrying it with Google’s comprehensive datasets and advanced decision intelligence. It does this not by replacing it but by incorporating advanced decision intelligence, enabling operational flexibility, and providing a solid data platform.  It integrates Generative AI to enable operational flexibility, and broadens the horizon of data analysis.

In a nutshell, it empowers SAP IBP to perform better, adapt faster, and deliver more insightful and actionable forecasts

Unlike the boxed-in, one-size-fits-all SaaS offerings from Aera, Noodle.ai, or Kinaxis, Planning in a Box embraces the diverse, dynamic nature of supply chain operations. It offers adaptive and custom-fit solutions to meet your unique business needs and market complexities. 

Leveraging Generative AI and predictive AI capabilities, it turns your data into actionable insights, empowering you to make informed, intelligent decisions. The result is a supply chain that’s not just robust and responsive but resilient against the uncertainties of the business landscape.

Unpacking Planning in a Box: A Deeper Dive

Decision Intelligence

Recognized by Gartner for its innovative approach, Planning in a Box analyzes your internal data alongside 250+ external data signals, providing dynamic insights that shape your business decisions. 

For instance, by incorporating factors such as weather patterns, market trends, and customer behavior, it can help you anticipate demand shifts and optimize inventory planning in real-time. This level of comprehensive, on-the-fly analysis allows you to respond swiftly and intelligently to the ever-changing market dynamics. 

Traditional SaaS products offer a one-size-fits-all approach, a solution that often falls short for complex, evolving businesses.

Download your free strategic roadmap to add decision intelligence to your operations.

Flexibility

In an age where market dynamics can pivot overnight, flexibility is crucial. Traditional SaaS solutions offer a one-size-fits-all approach, a solution that often falls short for complex, evolving businesses. 

Planning in a Box, however, was built on the premise of adaptability. It’s not a rigid system but a flexible framework that allows your supply chain solutions to evolve in tandem with your business.

Imagine your product line expands, or you decide to venture into new markets. In such situations, Planning in a Box allows you to easily adjust and scale your decision models to fit the new business context. It ensures your supply chain operations continue to run smoothly, regardless of the changes in your business landscape. This adaptability isn’t a luxury; it’s a necessity for businesses aspiring to stay agile and competitive.

Solid Alliance

‘Planning in a Box’ learns from your data, it adapts, it evolves, generating deep insights that bring an added layer of intelligence to your supply chain planning.

Planning in a Box represents a powerful partnership between industry titans—Google Cloud and SAP.

Google Cloud brings to the table its vast machine learning and AI capabilities, empowering Planning in a Box to go beyond mere data analysis.

Meanwhile, our alliance with SAP ensures an uninterrupted and enhanced utilization of your existing SAP systems. Planning in a Box integrates smoothly with SAP, creating a data ecosystem that blends SAP’s reliability and proven capabilities with the innovative AI and machine learning prowess of Google Cloud.

The result is a dynamic, intelligent, and adaptable data platform, ready to take your supply chain planning to new heights of efficiency and effectiveness.

Generative AI

With Planning in a Box, you won’t just be embarking on a long-term AI project; you’ll be deploying ready-to-use solutions with use cases across supply chain, marketing, sales, and finance.

Most Generative AI projects require months of setup time and substantial resources to even start delivering results. This is where Planning in a Box steps in, defying these common obstacles.

The robust data foundation of Planning in a Box allows for the seamless implementation of Generative AI, transforming raw data into actionable insights. It leverages the power of Google Cloud Cortex to rapidly process and analyze a vast array of data, both internal and external, creating a cohesive data environment ready for generative intelligence.

Moreover, identifying the right use cases, doing it right the first time, and tailoring the solution as per your unique requirements are all key aspects of Planning in a Box. Our approach ensures that the solution is aligned with your business goals and adapts as your needs evolve.

Success Stories

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    Achieved better order planning and marketing analytics.

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    Enabled Preventive Maintenance to minimize defects.

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    Predicted delay in delivery with the accuracy of 72%.

In a nutshell 

These solutions are designed to get you to insights faster, allowing you to realize the benefits of Generative AI without the lengthy setup and customization period typical of most AI projects.

Planning in a Box serves as a data bridge, linking SAP’s comprehensive business suite with Google Cloud’s state-of-the-art AI and Machine Learning capabilities. This symbiosis breaks down the barriers to AI for SAP users, offering a seamless way to infuse intelligence into their operations.

From retail and CPG to manufacturing industries, Planning in a Box ensures AI isn’t just an aspirational concept but a business reality, making AI implementation accessible, practical, and transformative. It’s enabling the shift from off-the-shelf, rigid solutions to a more dynamic, ‘build’ approach, where solutions can be molded to align perfectly with business needs.

Turbocharge Your Supply Chain: A Workshop Like No Other

To explore the transformative potential of Planning in a Box for your supply chain planning, we invite you to join our exclusive workshop. It’s more than a mere information session—it’s a hands-on, interactive platform where you can experience first-hand how Planning in a Box can revolutionize your SAP IBP processes.

During the workshop, you’ll discover how to:

  • Seamlessly integrate SAP Datasphere with Google Cloud
  • Leverage real-time market signals for optimized demand planning
  • Rapidly respond to market shifts
  • Gain 360° visibility on your inventory
  • Understand and respond to customers faster

The highlight? You’ll witness the integration of decision intelligence into your SAP data, producing insights that can elevate your business to new heights.

The workshop is an invaluable opportunity to fast-track your journey to a pilot with actionable insights, delivered in 8 weeks or less. But seats are limited, and time is of the essence. So sign up today and step into the future of supply chain planning.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Manju Devadas is the Founder and CEO of Pluto7, bringing 20+ years of experience in predictive analytics for Supply Chain, Retail and Manufacturing. With expertise in AI, Deep Learning, and Machine Learning, he has been instrumental in improving efficiency and strategic growth across industries.

Connect with Manju on LinkedIn