The chemical and fertilizer industries have several variables that influence farmers and agricultural businesses all over India as they operate under the Government Subsidy Scheme, which has regular reforms and customer demand disruption linked to the Minimum Support Prices (MSPs). Factors like the weather change, impact of increased costs for raw materials among others play a huge role too. These industry challenges motivated Deepak Fertilisers and Petrochemicals Corporation(DFPCL), India’s leading producers of fertilisers and industrial chemicals to take steps that will enable the compnay to anticipate potential supply problems and promptly revise business strategies to offer customers great service and value.
For a long time, DFPCL used spreadsheets for its sales and financial planning. Although this maintained smooth operations, it constrained adaptability and offered scant visibility into business performance. Key operational data was siloed across three different business units, which lengthened the planning processes.
“The type of industry we are in is impacted by a variety of external circumstances. Due to these impacts, it was crucial to develop agility by being aware of the developments in the market and being able to communicate them throughout the organization’s whole value chain to make judgments to best address a specific business unit or area. We could see that using traditional planning tools and procedures was preventing us from having the right levels of visibility to allow us to be agile and respond to ongoing macro and micro volatility, and so the shift towards Connected Planning was made,” shares Arun Bhanumurthy, Executive Vice President, Sales and Operations Planning, DFPCL.
Why adopted Anaplan
DFPCL was looking for a solution ensure end-to-end Connected Planning, bringing in visibility, agility and one source of data number across teams. To enable these capabilities, DFPCL evaluated many technology platforms. It sought support of Gartner Magic Quadrant Reports and evaluated a few in the best league and selected Anaplan ultimately.
“In contrast to other platforms that had their implementation teams, Anaplan had partners for implementation and that was an added advantage which brought in the expertise of Deloitte. We can now combine this data with demand-related limitations to obtain an accurate real-time picture of its manufacturing capacity and alter production as necessary, to guarantee that it can consistently meet demand fulfilments on time,” he states.
Anaplan was used to deploy a collaborative financial and supply chain planning system by DFPCL. The Sales & Operational Planning (S&OP) system with a hyper model allowed it to currently operate at some good level of planning maturity. It can now aim to move to the day-level granularity, which means that it will have a daily refresh. The planning and execution systems are going to integrate, and this would automatically make sure that control towers and dashboards will function with more real-time data being relayed into the system.
“We now have more time to analyse our plans and pinpoint the root reasons for any unexpected or undesirable deviations. As a result, Anaplan gives us a much better opportunity to refine our strategic decision-making and respond to market changes, allowing us to eventually support our customers better,” he continues.
Major benefits: enhanced collaboration between various divisions
The end-to-end implementation of the systems that allowed DFPCL to achieve month-level planning took more than a year, and during the last six to eight months, It has noticed a stabilizing of that process. Planning at the daily level is now being introduced progressively. DFPCL also implemented ‘Anaplan Optimizer’ in its production planning and scheduling procedures to further increase production efficiency. When different business units in the company are vying for the same raw material, Anaplan Optimizer make judgments more easily and helps improve organization-level profitability.
“With the entire value chain now connected, we can better assist our stakeholders by letting them understand our plan up front, how refreshers are occurring, and how changes to our supply or demand side may be influence the value chain, allowing them to course correct. This is because we are better able to estimate how stocks will be used up and how replenishments will take place, which has improved our delivery reliability. We no longer work in silos, and this has enhanced collaboration between production, purchasing, and logistics divisions as they also more responsive to one another,” Bhanumurthy highlighted.