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Connected Planning With Anaplan’s Intelligent Forecasting

In today’s business world, leaders must manage a growing list of challenges, including growing their businesses rapidly, accurately predicting future demands, and anticipating unforeseen market fluctuations. Many organizations are experiencing ever-increasing data volumes, and decision-makers may have difficulty filtering through the data to gain the insights they need to drive positive outcomes. Additionally, many analytical tools are based on high-level historical data, thereby requiring forecasting after unforeseeable shifts in the market occur.

Enterprise planning systems with a cloud-based model are among the fastest-growing market segments for Anaplan. Its people-centric planning approach will allow it to scale to the next level, but will it succeed?

An important aspect of connected planning is the idea that it is simple but transformative. Calderoni referred to it as “making dynamic, lasting connections between people, data, and plans.”

Anaplan is used for planning and allows concurrent planners to manage & edit complex models in real-time while parallel planners execute them in parallel. Planner changes will take effect in the business environment at the same time, which will enable the decision-makers to make informed, quick, and confident decisions.

In Anaplan, companies can engage in Finance Planning, Demand and Capacity Planning, Merchandise Planning or Territory and Quota Planning. When organizations become more aware of the connected planning benefits, their requirements for planning increase over time. Strategic decision-making is facilitated by connected planning through collaboration, predictive analytics, and self-learning.

How can Connected Planning help?

Anaplan’s Connected Planning is intended to provide one reliable source of information – ‘one version of the truth’.  An important part of the decision-making process is understanding what is happening in their business unit and how certain changes coming from other areas have affected the outcome.

Connected planning’s key benefits

Single Source of Truth – Connected Planning builds a single source of truth where data from different business units can be collected and used to create various spoke models

Making a more robust decision – Planners can use more data types in different formats to create detailed modeling scenarios using Connected Planning 

Change Plans – Connected Planning allows planners to modify plans on a real-time basis and identify key performance indicators. Moreover, planners can perform a retrospective review to identify the reasons why performance differed from the plan

Defining Future Performance – Planners tend to spend a lot of time during planning cycles consolidating historical data to predict future performance.  The process of predicting future performance is extremely time-consuming & inefficient. By using Connected Planning, planners can gain a deeper understanding of risks and opportunities for better outcomes without concentrating on data consolidation. 

Adjustment – In order for any organization to function effectively, its planning models must be flexible enough to adapt to adverse market conditions. It is possible to achieve the same results even during periods of uncertainty and unpredictability through Connected Planning. Different teams of planners can communicate and collaborate in real-time to ensure the market is taken into account in making instant adjustments

Predictive Scenario – By using predictive modeling, planners can find the most optimal solution for alternative plans by exploring what-if scenarios. Using Anaplan’s latest technology, large amounts of data can be recalculated very quickly. A model can also predict actual outcomes as well as future trends, such as seasonal patterns. Business users can take more confident decisions with Anaplan when they consider future projections.

Connected Planning – Things to consider

Data Hub Creation – No matter whether a Data Hub model will be deployed or an entire connected environment will be developed, a Data Hub model should always be deployed first. Besides acting as a central repository for all the spoke models, it also ensures that all data in the spoke models are consistent with the data stored in the data hub. Furthermore, data hubs can be used to export only specific data to specific spoke models, ensuring that performance is not hampered by unnecessary data.

Honeycomb Approach – Anaplan’s connected environment for other planning teams will be introduced after the first planning solution has been implemented. To support this requirement, Anaplan has developed the “Honeycomb” method of project scoping. It starts with the first implementation use case, then places other use cases related to the first implementation in the adjacent honeycomb spaces

Bridge Connections Between Teams – The lack of connected planning results in silos within an organization, which limits collaborative processes within the organization. By eliminating common communication problems, we can build bridges between teams and work towards more accurate forecasting. 

For example, It is possible to create unique roles and settings for users to ensure that multiple teams can work on the same model simultaneously without any disruption. Because Anaplan calculates data in real-time, users have access to the most current set of numbers each time they log in. As well, Anaplan allows the importation of data between models or automatic data feeds, regardless of the workspace where the models are located.

Multiple integration options –

  • Import-Export of manual data
  • Mulesoft
  • Informatica – Anaplan HyperConnect
  • Anaplan Connect
  • Dell Boomi
  • SnapLogic

By connecting Anaplan with any sort of operational plan across the organization, a single version of the truth is created.

Make your plans more accurate with predictive AI

Anaplan now uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to help you gain a deeper understanding of the valuable data you collect throughout your organization. By integrating signals from within your business with global inputs, we can uncover hidden opportunities and uncover actionable directions.

There is no one source of truth that can be consulted everywhere, from the C-suite to ordinary cubicles, creating a “messy middle”. With Anaplan’s highly scalable, responsive, integrated system of record, you can eliminate confusion and duplicate work, for swift execution and accountability that’s reliable, accurate, and traceable. This software eliminates organizational silos and incorporates external and internal factors seamlessly across all departments, allowing you to make smarter decisions going forward.

If you are interested in extending Anaplan capabilities further and further refining your investments, Polestar Solutions is the right place for you. By providing expert advice and support, Polestar Solutions can assist you in enhancing your current Anaplan investments.