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  • Doug Dedman

Effective S&OP: Monthly Process

Updated: Dec 2, 2022

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Our last article, Effective S&OP: Product Family Design, identified the key characteristics required to have an effective Executive S&OP process, particularly around the design of product families. In this article, we will dive into the best steps to follow for an S&OP monthly process.


The standard Executive S&OP process is based on four separate meetings that occur in a monthly cycle. The monthly meeting cycle provides a data-driven decision-making framework to move from an unconstrained demand plan through to a balanced family plan. The process culminates in the Executive S&OP meeting where the business leader signs off on the proposed plan. The diagram below shows the meeting cycle.    


A brief outline of each step in the process and how it is tied to establishing RACI is provided below. For each meeting, the steps, outlined as a checklist, should occur to move you through a well-executed S&OP process.

Additionally, the accountability and responsibility within a RACI (responsible, accountable, consulted, and informed) framework should be clearly defined for each meeting. Accountability refers to the person that is held to account for the outcome of the process (the final plan), while responsibility refers to the person that that makes sure the task gets completed or develops the plan.

At DBM, we provide your team with coaching and the tools needed to run an effective S&OP process. Through the Virtual Accelerator process, you can implement a sustainable Executive S&OP process in just six months. One of our key tools puts all the critical data in one place on the 5-Section Sheet so your team can get to the true story of the business. Throughout this article, we use the 5-Section Sheet to show which plans to focus on for each meeting.

  1. Pre-S&OP Demand Meeting:

  • Meeting Checklist:

  • Review last month’s performance

  • Review bookings, shipments, and backlog plans by demand stream

  • Check reasonability of overall demand plan (sum of the demand streams), adjust if required

  • Update Risks and Assumptions

  • Approve unconstrainted demand plans

  • Outcome: The outcome of the pre-S&OP demand meeting should be an unconstrained demand plan. This plan should include projected bookings, shipments and backlog and be segmented by major demand types (demand streams).

  • Accountability: Sales Leader (VP of Sales)

  • Responsibility: Demand Planner/S&OP Coordinator