GMCS has automated budgeting and forecasting at Askona using IBM products
Moscow, June 29, 2021 – GMCS, an IBM business partner, has launched a budgeting, analysis and forecasting system based on IBM Planning Analytics and IBM Cognos Analytics at Askona, Europe’s largest vertically integrated manufacturer and retailer of healthy sleep products.
Askona is the market leader in sleep products. The company is also developing an international business under the Sleep8 brand. The company is represented on the Russian market by 900 retail stores, the main production facilities of Askona are located in Kovrov, Novosibirsk and Vladimir.
Digitalization covered the following processes: budget campaign, sales forecasting for retail chains and wholesale directions, production planning with accuracy to each SKU, purchases and stocks. In addition, the possibility of a planned calculation of the production cost based on the current tariff rates is provided.
IBM Planning Analytics provides scenario budgeting with the variation in forecast acceptance depending on the company’s goals. Financial modeling is configured considering the calculation of the break-even point for the structural units of the company. The forecasting block implements complex algorithms for determining groups of retail stores for sales planning.
“The timing of the budget campaign has been reduced by 40%, which is a very good indicator given the scale of our business, the complexity of processes and the volume of operations. But most importantly, we did not just automate budget processes, but received a complex system that allows us to flexibly predict and calculate various scenarios for achieving the desired financial result considering a number of influencing factors,” said Ivan Lashkov, CFO of the Askona Group of Companies.
In the planning of shipments, a base has been prepared for the implementation of an auto-order project. In the future, Askona’s employees will be able to generate shipments by point of sale in IBM Planning Analytics, which will be automatically transferred to the existing accounting system. This will increase the speed of delivery planning.
Currently, the automated system for budgeting, analysis and forecasting is in commercial operation.
“A clear understanding of the goals and objectives, support at all levels and well-coordinated work of the joint project team ensured the success of this large-scale project. In the process of implementation, the project management methodology was transformed. We switched from Waterfall to Agile, which made it possible to quickly and flexibly manage the project development strategy”, said Roman Tsikolenko, Business Development Director, Project Curator, GMCS. “Among the project results should be noted a basis for the development of predictive analytics prepared for the purposes of forecasting and optimization of production. This opens up wide opportunities for optimizing production and sales processes based on prediction changes in market demand and consumption trends”.
The Askona group of companies is the leader in the sleep products industry in Russia, the largest vertically integrated manufacturer and retailer of healthy sleep products in Eastern Europe. The company distributes and sells goods of its own production: a wide retail network includes more than 900 of its own salons and franchised stores under the brands Ascona, Hilding Anders and King Koil. The production facilities of the company are located in Kovrov, Vladimir and Novosibirsk.