IBP Workshop Round 2: Thoughts & Reflections

(By Claudio Gonzalez)

Our first IBP workshop back in June was such a success that we knew right away that more were on the horizon.  Last weekend we had our second one, and it was excellent.  Before we got down to business, it was a great pleasure to reconnect with people in person again.  Just that alone made the weekend great.  But, we were there for business, so everyone got down to hard core IBP learning mode quickly.  A big thumbs up to Pat Green for delivering the workshop in such a way that made sense; he was able to provide huge amounts of information in a short period of time. By having colleagues with both business and technical backgrounds, it made the interaction around the capabilities of the tools a very interesting one. On one side, you have the business process related questions and how IBP can help a company plan better.  On the other, you have the real techie questions around what’s really under the hood and what can we really do with this tool technically (looking at you here, Steve!).

From a personal point of view, it has been very interesting to see how fast IBP has grown functionally from just a year ago. SCM Connections got the latest release of IBP that same weekend (1608) and looking at what’s included, the functionalities are indeed exciting and with high delivery potential.  Is it better than APO?  In some areas, yes, it is.  We have to understand that all new functionality around advanced planning is now being added to IBP (for example, Demand Sensing and Optimization leveling), while all the current functionality that makes APO strong is being added in IBP by leaps and bounds.  I would say that by the end of 2017, over 90% of APO functionality will be there in one form or another in IBP, plus all the new functionality that IBP provides. Thus, at this point, the answer between, “Do we implement APO or IBP” should be rather easy to answer.

Of course, between sessions, we also took advantage of having great people in one place for the weekend, so SCM Connections sponsored a great dinner at one of Indy’s steakhouses!  We do love our office, but it was still nice getting out and enjoying everyone’s company over a NY strip and red wine. Though I must say that the highlight of the evening was going to a German-themed beer garden with great live music. And no, I would have never imagined that such a place could existed in downtown Indy, but it does, and it is awesome.

By the end of the weekend, we realized that what we were doing was highly valuable, so if you missed it, don’t panic: more workshops will be scheduled in the upcoming months.  I am happy to report that SCM Connections now has over 15 resources who are IBP trained!  We don’t like to pat ourselves on the back too often, but this deserves at least a light one.

Thanks to everyone who made the workshop a great success!

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