HoMedics takes efficiency improvements off the scale with Infor

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Infor, provider of business application software serving more than 70,000 customers, has announced that HoMedics, a distributor of consumer products, will extend its investment in Infor applications with a deployment of Infor Demand Planning.  The application will replace existing fragmented supply chain planning systems across HoMedics' UK, Italian and German entities with a web-based forecasting solution to enable near real-time collaboration between sales and operations.  Demand Planning will help enhance forecasting and planning to improve the alignment of inventory with changes in demand, and allow HoMedics to explore various "what-if" scenarios, in line with seasonal demand changes.

HoMedics already makes extensive use of Infor LN, and Infor Demand Planning will utilise data from this ERP application to improve budgeting and reporting, expanding the scope from simply forecasting to inventory and replenishment planning, helping to deliver a full range of reports that are key to support the sales and operations planning (S&OP) process of the company.

HoMedics' legacy demand planning systems and fragmented processes resulted in poor levels of demand forecast accuracy at the time of purchase, with abrupt reductions in sales forecasts leading to excess inventory.

The fragmentation of these supply chain systems and batch processing of data updates also led to a slow response to demand variations. In addition, the legacy systems could not operate on new, 64-bit hardware.

As a result, HoMedics undertook a project to deliver additional planning capabilities, reduce the administration burden associated with planning and decrease inventory levels.

"Our initial goal is to realise a substantial inventory reduction through improved forecast accuracy and we are very confident of a rapid return," explained Keith Allison, operations director, HoMedics Group Ltd. "But beyond this, Infor Demand Planning will also help us evaluate the routes of supply to our international distribution centres, to help us realise the optimum scenarios for both high volume and premium products, delivering the lowest cost of transport."

"Improved planning is consistently one of the top concerns of manufacturers like HoMedics, who face profound changes in seasonal demand patterns," said Pieter Leijten, vice president, supply chain, EMEA, Infor.  "Infor Demand Planning not only enables improvements in existing supply chain arrangements but also allows businesses to explore the impact of these changes in demand.  This results in a more accurate and realistic prediction of demand to help develop strategies to ensure faster service, lower cost and more efficient operations. Ultimately we provide a complete view of these demand changes and this helps HoMedics remain agile and gain critical competitive advantage by being faster to react, and explore options to shape demand."

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