8 Measures for Sales and Operations Planning in Turbulent Times, Part 5

Reading time ( words)

In this series, CEPHAS principal Fane Friberg highlights the interdependent elements of an effective S&OP process for leaders of supply chain management. While some companies tend to fall back on the status quo, Freiberg highlights why it’s critical to actually increase the frequency of the S&OP rather than decrease the operations. He has reviewed the importance of staying committed, strategic imperatives, participation, and technology. Today, he discusses rough-cut capacity planning.

Focus #5: Rough-Cut Capacity Planning

After the S&OP data is loaded, now you need to look at your rough capacity. Is the current demand profile going to be facilitated by your business operations? Are there enough human resources in the correct skillset for the schedule? What about machines and methods?

This step is used as an acid test to ensure that the manufacturing control/execution system or job shop environments can react adequately to the changes, including internal disturbance (e.g., equipment failures, rework) and external disturbance (e.g., variations in customer demand); on the other hand, one must optimize multiple logistic objectives and have short throughput times, low work-in-process (WIP) rates and high schedule reliability to achieve the plan.

This validation point is to substantiate that the enterprise can deliver quality goods-and-services on-time within the existing cost structure. This is not the step to force schedule compression, overtime, expedites, etc. This is a good point in the process to highlight your constraints and begin to strategize how to exploit the constraint(s) and subordinate everything else in the analysis.

For example, James Clear posted the following idea [1]:

“When failure is expensive, plan carefully.

 When failure is cheap, act quickly.”


  1. J. Clear, “3-2-1: On failure, the importance of teaching, and handling the expectations of others,” February 20, 2020.

Fane Friberg is principal of CEPHAS.



Suggested Items

The Benefits of Statistical Process Control

02/17/2021 | Kurt Palmer, Bürkle North America
The concepts of statistical process control were initially developed by Dr. Walter Shewhart of Bell Laboratories in the 1920s, and were expanded upon by Dr. W. Edwards Deming, who introduced SPC to Japanese industry after WWII. After early successful adoption by Japanese firms, SPC has now been incorporated by organizations around the world as a primary tool to improve product quality by reducing process variation.

Benchmarking With Your Suppliers: What to Know About Solder Mask

02/16/2021 | Bob MacRae, Taiyo America
Everyone wants a smooth-running solder mask process with high productivity and minimal rejects, but to achieve this you really need a firm understanding of what your current process is capable of, what its limitations are, and what you want to improve. Process capability benchmarking is a great way to identify and implement improvements within your process.

Your Greatest Competition is Yourself

01/20/2021 | Barry Matties, I-Connect007
It really doesn’t matter who you think your external competitors are, because the only competitor that really matters is you. Of course, you will look externally to stay on top of latest trends, but when it comes to competition, just competing with yourself is a win. When you look at yourself as your greatest competitor you will start with a huge advantage: you already have great intel on how “your competition” thinks. Ask yourself, “What can I do to displace my ‘competitor’ and create something much better?”

Copyright © 2021 I-Connect007. All rights reserved.