8 Measures for Sales and Operations Planning in Turbulent Times, Part 5

Reading time ( words)

In this series, CEPHAS principal Fane Friberg highlights the interdependent elements of an effective S&OP process for leaders of supply chain management. While some companies tend to fall back on the status quo, Freiberg highlights why it’s critical to actually increase the frequency of the S&OP rather than decrease the operations. He has reviewed the importance of staying committed, strategic imperatives, participation, and technology. Today, he discusses rough-cut capacity planning.

Focus #5: Rough-Cut Capacity Planning

After the S&OP data is loaded, now you need to look at your rough capacity. Is the current demand profile going to be facilitated by your business operations? Are there enough human resources in the correct skillset for the schedule? What about machines and methods?

This step is used as an acid test to ensure that the manufacturing control/execution system or job shop environments can react adequately to the changes, including internal disturbance (e.g., equipment failures, rework) and external disturbance (e.g., variations in customer demand); on the other hand, one must optimize multiple logistic objectives and have short throughput times, low work-in-process (WIP) rates and high schedule reliability to achieve the plan.

This validation point is to substantiate that the enterprise can deliver quality goods-and-services on-time within the existing cost structure. This is not the step to force schedule compression, overtime, expedites, etc. This is a good point in the process to highlight your constraints and begin to strategize how to exploit the constraint(s) and subordinate everything else in the analysis.

For example, James Clear posted the following idea [1]:

“When failure is expensive, plan carefully.

 When failure is cheap, act quickly.”


  1. J. Clear, “3-2-1: On failure, the importance of teaching, and handling the expectations of others,” February 20, 2020.

Fane Friberg is principal of CEPHAS.


Suggested Items

The Brave New World of the CTO

09/21/2022 | I-Connect007 Editorial Team
In this conversation with the I-Connect007 Editorial Team, Alex Stepinski shares his insight on how to automate the PCB fab. Spoiler alert: It doesn’t start with new equipment and panel handlers; it’s much more strategic than that. Alex details the new role of a chief technology officer in the 21st century and cautions that we don’t have nearly enough of them in the industry. The focus, he says, should be on statements of work rather than so much on skilled labor. He also hopes this is just the beginning of more important conversations like these.

Plating on Silver: What’s Old is New Again

07/07/2022 | Denis Jacques, Technic Inc.
About three decades ago, immersion silver, a nitrate-based process, gained a lot of market share in the world of PCB final finishes. More economical than ENIG, flat, solderable, and conductive, it had everything going for it—everything but corrosion resistance in a harsh environment, that is. Champagne voids were also an issue, along with line reduction. But the worst drawback, the characteristic that made the part short over time, was creep corrosion. A build-up of copper sulfide salt that grows in contact with a sulfur-rich environment, heat, and moisture resulted in failures in the field. This was enough to scar the process for good.

EIPC Summer Conference 2022: Day 2 Review

06/29/2022 | Pete Starkey, I-Connect007
Örebro, Sweden on June 15 brought a bright and early start to Day 2 of the EIPC Summer Conference for those who had enjoyed the previous evening’s networking dinner, but had resisted the temptation to over-indulge or to carry on their long-awaited catch-up conversations with old friends into the small hours. All but a few were in their seats for 9 a.m., awake and attentive for Session 4 of the conference, on the theme of new process technologies, moderated by Martyn Gaudion, CEO of Polar Instruments.

Copyright © 2022 I-Connect007. All rights reserved.