Blue Yonder is committed to helping its customers face the unexpected. To provide insights into the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic and its impact on supply chains around the world, we are delivering a blog series to help anyone looking for support and advice. Our experts, who have spent years in the supply chain industry, share their insights.

We have talked about it for years: the importance of supplier and retailer collaboration. Annualized planning on the direction of assortments, trends, SLA’s, planogram development and trade fund management is an important part of the supplier/retailer planning process. But what have we learned today during the recent onslaught on our supply chains due to the pandemic known as COVID-19? We learned much in ways we never could have imagined from shopper distancing, excessive pantry loading, safety, and supply chain constraints which are impacting the ability to have product in-stock.

The new normal in planning needs to incorporate some traditional planning processes, but with changes to go-to-market. There should be a greater understanding of consumer confidence, manufacturing location, contingency planning, diversity in the supply chain, and leveraging not just data, but insights on how the consumer responds to purchase consumption. Planning not just time horizons (30, 60, 90 days) but incrementally in categories, impacts from online shopping and leveraging realized media to share to support future demand planning. Insights driving AI/ML trends and edge demand will play a critical role perchance another event of this magnitude should come upon us.

This blog is a part of our Coffee & Category Management Vlog series. Be sure to check out part one on Category Management in the New Normal – POV from Blue Yonder and stay tuned for the next installment.