Successful Workshop on Forecast Performance Measurement and Value Added

29 March 2017

The importance and relevance of this topic was clear from the excellent turnout of over one hundred participants.

The speakers were drawn from the USA, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland and the UK, and were able to draw on extensive experience of forecasting performance measurement in practice. Charles Chase from SAS, the keynote speaker, explained that ‘value added’ can be measured by the improvement in forecast accuracy at a number of key stages (eg original forecast, judgmental adjustment, final approval). Charles discussed the impact of the correct model specification including promotions on safety stock, pointing out that significant stock reductions may be achieved.

Bram Desmet from Solventure gave a presentation on “The impact of business strategy on forecasting and forecast performance”. He discussed three possible strategies each of which shapes the forecasting task based on practical examples from the industry. He demonstrated how the increase in forecasting accuracy leads to improvements in service level and directly decreases costs, leading to a better turnover and higher returns.

Marina Sologubova discussed the internal forecasting process at Johnson & Johnson (J&J) and discussed the Forecast Value Added (FVA) chain from Naïve forecast to statistical forecast to the inclusion of market intelligence. At the end of her presentation, Marina pointed out the importance of categorisation to the forecasting task, highlighting current practice at J&J.

Jörg-André Barda explained how improvements in forecast accuracy had been attained by continuous training and software support at Beiersdorf. Continuing with this case-study, Sven Crone (Lancaster University) showed how judgmental adjustments to statistical forecasts add value at Beiersdorf. At the end of his presentation, Sven demonstrated a new software platform he has developed through iqast, using a gamification approach to generate forecasted value added reports.

At the end of the afternoon, a lively panel session, chaired by Robert Fildes, addressed questions from the audience, including the issue of financial value added.

The slides of the presentations are available below:

 Further impressions from the event: