End-to-End Demand Planning Transformation Saves Global Retailer Millions Annually

The Problem

The issue for a Fortune 500 global retailer finally reached a breaking point because of a reliance on manual processes, the use of disconnected tools, and a lack of enough performance analytics to help make key strategic decisions. As a result, 590+ planners worldwide spent more than 300,000 hours a year manipulating data in Excel to manage their global merchandising, forecasting, buy planning, and location planning—costing the client millions of dollars annually in lost revenue opportunities because they had the wrong merchandize inventory to meet a growing consumer demand. 


The Approach

Propeller provided the first fully dedicated resource devoted to standing up a transformed program. To start, the Propeller team facilitated workshops with VPs across technology, demand and supply management, data and analytics, and strategic enterprise capabilities. From this effort, they helped the client create short and mid-term objectives, tracks of work, and a full roll-out roadmap—which, in turn, informed the required budget and resource needs. Next, the team cross functionally assessed high-potential resources and oversaw individual R&R definition to onboard individuals comprising a 40-person leadership team that eventually managed a 250-person tech transformation organization. Propeller managed the portfolio budget, established the program management structure, and stood up each  transformation project. Additionally, Propeller consultants oversaw each project manager, served as a business leader for Agile big room planning prioritization, and leveraged retail expertise to facilitate a host of global workshops that more clearly defined the future of planning across strategy, process, tech, and data. 

Services Provided

  • Actionable Recommendations
  • Agile Leadership
  • Data Integration & Vendor Management
  • Portfolio Management
  • Program Planning & Road Mapping
  • Team Leadership & Development
  • Technology Implementation

Value Delivered

Propeller consultants defined the transformation program from the ground up, leveraging their retail planning expertise to successfully guide a positive outcome despite a politically charged global team environment. The end result was an alignment on the planning transformation vision, projects, roles and responsibilities. Propeller ultimately held all roles accountable to their deliverables through effective end-to-end program management oversight. Project highlights include:

  • A $1.1 billion, 10-year projected global revenue lift from providing better products at the right place and at the right time to meet consumer demand, maximizing full-price sales.
  • A $200M projected annual margin lift
  • A transformed organization of 250 employees able to open at least 40% capacity per planner to focus on the art of planning rather than data manipulation.