Order Fulfillment & ATP

Promises Made, Promises Kept
Current Solution: SAP Optimization

Order Fulfillment & Available to Promise

Order Fulfillment & Available to Promise (ATP)—the ability to control distribution, predict inventory and meet promises—is the foundation for customer excellence. It is the building block that gets us to a reasonable commitment. Most importantly, it is the gateway to the fulfillment of this mantra: promises made, promises kept.

When ATP is working well and rules are aligned with business behaviors, we are setup for success in order fulfillment.

At any given time, a sales order arrives that contains the requested quantity, time and location of product to be delivered. SAP ATP uses this data to determine whether there will be sufficient supply to meet the demand, determine whether a promise can be made and the schedule that would be needed to keep that promise On Time and In Full (OTIF).  

Order Fulfillment & ATP leads to greater stability and predictability throughout the supply chain and that, in turn, leads to better customer service. Increasing customer retention by just 5% can increase profits from 25% - 95% and position your organization as a world-class supplier. 

What is Effective Order Fulfillment & ATP? 

Service level improvement is the ultimate goal of Order Fulfillment & ATP when combined with the effective use of Material Requirement Planning (MRP). When supply chain activities are aligned with promises in mind, the result is improved customer service levels that are informed by a greater visibility and trust in the data.

When team members confidently trust what the system is telling them, the benefits are vast: increased customer satisfaction and retention, improved inventory turns, increased operating efficiencies and realizing more value from your investment in SAP. 

Order Fulfillment & ATP Challenges 

Supply chain members who are not using or do not trust ATP data find themselves checking availability via phone calls, emails, meetings or other investigation. Often, multiple touch points are needed to answer a customer’s inquiry on availability. This not only increases the workload for teams involved in those touch points, but it also increases the time needed to process an order through delivery to billing, increases the potential for delayed fulfillment and increases the potential for miscommunication and error.

If you find yourself consistently referencing that Excel spreadsheet, that’s a good indication that your supply chain is not aligned.

Optimize Order Fulfillment & Available to Promise

To optimize Order Fulfillment & ATP, Reveal utilizes its value-driven oVo® methodology to helps organizations boost key customer satisfaction metrics including OTIF, backorder processing, product allocation, daily sales order monitoring and more.

Acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing customer. Orders that are not delivered on time and in full lead to increased labor and shipping costs and lower revenue due to lost sales, customer fines and lost customers. 

Whether it’s optimizing supply chain performance or implementing additional SAP functionality, Reveal helps organizations improve internal business processes, educate users and deploy the smart use of SAP to achieve sustainable, tangible value. By challenging organizations to move away from being transactionally driven and move towards information-users that manage the process and apply knowledge, improvements in agility, service, cost, and inventory performance are achieved.

Q&A

Q: How Can SAP Help Improve Service Levels?

A: SAP can help improve service levels and provides tools and functionality to support this.  True improvement, however, requires a cross functional/integrated approach from planning, procurement, production on through to the shop floor, and from there through quality, warehousing/logistics and order management. SAP provides tools for oversight and management throughout the process and alerts us to potential problems.

Q: Can SAP Help Us Manage Orders Where the Customer Has Specific Receiving Days/Times?

A: SAP provides functionality in the form of Customer Receiving Calendars to assist organizations meeting the requirement to accept deliveries on certain dates and times.  It is integrated with the specification of the requested delivery date as well as delivery scheduling and Available to Promise ATP.  It has the flexibility to warn the agent that the requested date is on a non-receiving day and provide the next available date.  The agent can then adjust the date or allow it in the event the customer is willing to make arrangements to accept delivery on a non-receiving day.

Q:  How Can I use SAP To Help with Product Allocation?

A: SAP does have the ability to enforce product allocation.  However, an organization needs to consider whether the functionality they are looking for is either the ability to ensure priority customers are serviced before others at all times regardless of stock levels, or whether they are looking for enforced rules pertaining to a defined quantity, percentage or “fair share” type of behavior.  The functionality will determine which direction should be considered - literal product allocation or customer segmentation/prioritization in fulfillment.

Next Steps

Let’s discuss how we can help with your Order Fulfillment & ATP
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