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Demand forecasting automation: Embed AI in your workflows

AI in demand forecasting and planning is the logical next step for retail, manufacturing, and FMCG business leaders to scale revenues and cut unwanted costs. Integrating AI is a great way to forecast demand accurately to avoid stock outs and over stocking, improve production lead times, minimize costs, increase operational efficiencies, and improve the customer experience. However, there is a huge risk of failure that you do not want to invite if you ignore streamlining the front-and back-office processes and if your entire universe of IT applications is not integrated properly.

Easy demand forecasting automation integration instead of complete reengineering

You certainly do not want to on-board a new AI tool or a new AI integration that eventually withers away in the graveyard of tools and systems. Hence, you want to be able to easily unify and automate your IT landscape and create a working ecosystem that connects end-to-end with your entire business process – Connecting Order Management, Financial Accounting, Inventory Management, Logistics Handling, Store Operations, Sales Management, Customer Service, and more.

In such a situation, it takes an IT team and an extensive expertise in legacy applications, legacy programming languages, and legacy architectures to enable unification of your disparate systems. Specialists in legacy specialists come at a premium price-point and it is difficult to find omni-skilled technical specialists who can suggest the best way to retail the best practices from your legacy processes while helping migrate or integrate to newer systems that are less complex and low-code. Our experts can ensure that the older systems are not immediately replaced and there is no unnecessary re-engineering of systems design from the bottom-up.




Download this Retail Forecasting Automation Use Case Study

Discover how finance and operations leaders from top Fortune 500 companies are automating enterprise-wide workflows in FMCG and Retail to speed-up forecasting and budgeting.

How to know if it is time for you to use AI for demand forecasting

If you are experiencing growing order volumes in the tens of thousands – running into millions of views on your website and several thousand SKUs – keeping a track of the demand and revenues is bound to become a challenge. In such a situation, you will want to migrate to a high-performance cloud, take a call on moving to a flexible hybrid cloud, or maybe upgrade to a new data architecture to match customer demand and employee workload. And while you cannot do away with the excel spreadsheet to manage your inventory, there are tasks that will require manual intervention. However, manual input of data in the absence of automated data consolidation for forecasting can adversely impact revenues. There is a high risk of demand forecasting going wrong leading to a problem of over stocking or understocking of SKUs.

Typical challenges of a business leader dealing with growing sales orders:

  • Keep a reasonable amount of stock on hand when dealing with multichannel sales and varying marketplace trends.
  • Bill of Material (BOM) management requires more involved forecasting as one material component is needed to manufacture multiple SKUs
  • A product can take up to three months from order to delivery from the factory to our distribution centers, making it difficult to anticipate future stock availability.
  • Accuracy of short-and long-term demand estimates and revenue forecasts
  • Reduce mistakes by manually monitoring the behavior of every customer and SKU combination.
  • Demand planning team is dealing with multiple spreadsheets to consolidate.

How to build a fail-proof AI Demand Forecasting System

We specialize in the deployment of automation connectors that can be easily configured into your company’s unique products, sales channels, customers, and important external data sets. We have pre-defined AI models that can be automatically tuned to your unique product characteristics and customer behavior. With AI pipelines created for each SKU and customer combination, the AI constantly monitors that relationship.

Our solution architects can help you in the implementation of cutting-edge behavioral AI products, to further create forward looking predictive sales forecasts for every product and customer.

Automation you can implement:

  • Automate the delivery of the most accurate forecast possible
  • Automate forecasts provided for each product/style by SKU
  • Automate forecasting of new products/styles with little or no history
  • Automate forecasts provided for each buyer, at the most granular level
  • Automate raising alerts on out-of-stocks and over-production
  • Automate continuous updating of data and market inputs into systems
  • Automate complex outcome calculations by using scenario development
  • Automate ease adoption of AI workflows with minimal technical knowledge

The problem: Automating the intake or input of relevant information coming from suppliers

There is a lot of exchange of information that is typically possible between the retail manufacturer and the supplier. There are chances that you are spending a lot of manual effort and time in doing data entry and updating information on the status of products reached and those which are in transit. On the basis of information about the orders reaching your destination can you predict the future stocking requirement. Thereby, this automated process of raising alerts on stock arrivals can help avoid overstocking. It will help the retail operations teams who are forward in the chain to see the future stocks that are due to arrive and thereafter analyze if any specific SKU requires further stocking and which ones don’t. Based on the movement of sales and with a view of the future inventory, they can then determine if more of any specific SKU is needed and for which ones production must be scaled down.

Now, in this situation where you are dealing with manual dependencies involving tens of thousands of SKUs, it is likely to cause chaos. Imagine a situation when the manual operator is to input this data about a mail received from the supplier which gets missed out. In such a situation due to a failure to get timely insights a possibility of millions of orders that are not likely to be sold will be produced in a factory causing irreversible liability of stock.

The solution: What if you are able to input new information as it comes your way

  • When your system is automated, the entire supply chain will remain informed about a key decision based on sales and stock visibility
  • Every time a new email, call, or document about the order/SKU is received, it will automatically cascade into a unified view
  • Automated routing will alert all responsible stakeholders about the information available in the system
  • With this automated process flow, the latest changes in delivery times and order status are updated automatically


With Sun Technologies’ award-winning, workflow automation, you don’t have to re-engineer or reinvent the wheel. Instead, we can help you make the best use of your existing legacy system – tweak your existing inventory management system so that you automate existing inventory processes with any new input coming your way.

For example, one of your suppliers struggles to get shipments out on time. You can program a response for such a scenario and automate the process and individuals you want to pull into the subsequent decision-making.

In case of shipment delays across the country causes problems for your far-flung suppliers, you may save those notes in your system automatically. It will help you know when it’s time to place those critical orders. You can even keep up with projected future demands with inventory forecasting so that you don’t run out of supplies between deliveries.

There has never been a better moment to automate inventory forecasting and demand planning. You can now stay on top of everything in your firm, especially when meeting client requests.

Contact our solution specialists to learn more about integrating automation to change your company’s inventory forecasting process.

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