Stockholm, Sweden, September 16, 2014 –(PR.com)– Today, Aftermarket management company, Syncron, responded to feedback from users by releasing enhancements to its inventory management software.
Syncron’s latest release includes changes to how seasonality calculations are performed and dynamic boundaries for Value of Annual Usage (VAU) classifications. Syncron also improved functionality related to estimated lead time for complex supplier relationships.
“Our system is designed to solve problems for companies managing thousands of items in multi-echelon environments,” said Tomas Wennerstein, Inventory Management Expert and Managing Director of Syncron North America. “We regularly monitor our user group to identify opportunities to enhance our software and meet the unique needs of aftermarket and service parts providers.”
While Syncron has always supported seasonal adjustment to demand planning, this release includes functionality that detects when the seasonal profile is inaccurate, or that some items don’t fit the group properly. The forecasting model allows the user to plan items with annual seasonal patterns of demand. These patterns are now automatically detected by the system, and extensive GUI support allows the user to control how seasonal items are forecasted. The system automates seasonality for individual items and groups of items.
For individual items, the system analyzes the demand history and detects whether it follows an annual seasonal pattern. Each item is categorized as seasonal or not, and a suggested seasonal profile is provided to the user, when appropriate. For groups of items, the user can determine a selection of items that should follow a similar seasonal pattern. Then, the system calculates a common profile that best fits the whole group. Aggregating items in groups to generate a shared profile allows the system to apply seasonality to items with short, unreliable demand history.
“Many of Syncron’s customers are machinery manufacturers that sell equipment that is bought, used and repaired during certain seasons,” said Maksymilian Humpich, Global Inventory Management, Product Manager for Syncron. “Our system does an excellent job applying this same seasonality to the parts used within the equipment. Planned alone, these parts appear to have scarce or irregular demand. When considered as a group, we are able to identify the correct seasonal profile for the equipment and its parts.”
With this latest release, inventory managers can define boundaries for VAU through the graphical user interface (GUI). VAU is calculated by multiplying the price of the item by the total demand in a year. Syncron’s inventory management solution uses VAU as an input for ABC classification. ABC classification is similar to the Pareto principle, also known as the 80–20 rule, with A-items being the most valuable and C-items being the least valuable. VAU is used to place inventory into class A, B or C. These classes impact inventory policy and functionality.
The users can now adjust VAU boundaries to determine what percentage of items should be included in each class, and re-calculate the exact boundaries of these classes regularly. The boundaries are determined either by setting fixed values or by defining the percentage of items that should fall below or above a given class. The system then calculates the boundaries that best meet the given criteria.
“With this change, the user can identify inventory hot spots, and separate them from the rest of the items,” said Maksymilian Humpich, Director of Development for Syncron. “We improved the VAU calculation by better accounting for seasonality, trends and forecast adjustments. The result is greater control of stock categorization. The new functionality also simulates the effect of changing the VAU boundaries, which helps the planner make a better decision.”
In multi-echelon environments, a static supplier lead time does not always reflect the time required to deliver an item. The lead time assumes that the supplier has the item in stock and available. When the supplier does stock the item, it is usually with some service level, which creates occasional stock outs. In situations where the item is out-of-stock, an order must be placed to a third or original supplier. If that supplier does not to stock the item, and has to order from its own supplier, the lead times are typically added to generate a lead time. In this release, Syncron introduced a new process for estimating lead time, which accounts for these multi-echelon supply chains. This functionality is designed to support large networks of warehouses, where “the supplier of my supplier” is still controlled by system.
The ability to automatically calculate seasonality, dynamically adjust VAU classes and improve lead time estimates increases efficiency and planning for aftermarket and spare parts manufacturers. With these enhancements, Syncron expands its service to the aftermarket, which is an area of expertise for the company. Syncron customers using Global Inventory Management version 14.1 are already benefiting from these enhancements.
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