Nubeprint’s Shipping Forecast app is more reliable than an ERP sales forecast.
We measure more and more: the temperature outside, the temperature at home, the steps we walk, the “likes” on our profile? We measure out of necessity, to feel comfortable or out of curiosity. But using one or another formula to measure the same concept can have dramatic consequences, as the printing and MPS industry has seen during the pandemic. Do you think that a sales forecast based on ERP data is the same as one based on information from Nubeprint?
In cost-per-copy MPS (Managed Print Services) contracts, the performance of the contracts is directly dependent on the performance of the inputs. As with transport vehicles, when one of the consumables runs out, the printer stops working.
But cartridge yield exists whether the printer is on an MPS contract, is owned, or the distributor merely sells cartridges. To meet all the customer’s needs, there are only two ways: to have a huge stock or to know them in advance.
The former is economically unfeasible. This is why distributors have been using forecasts based on their historical sales to estimate their future sales, which is provided by any ERP.
During the pandemic, many customers went out of business and, in just 24 hours, the distributor found not only that its turnover plummeted, but also that its warehouses were full of cartridges that no one was going to order for months. And even worse, when in the following months he asked his ERP for volume forecasts to manage his warehouse and his purchases, the ERP indicated quantities of cartridges that he was obviously not going to be able to sell in the short term.
One year after the pandemic, the ERP has continued to give erroneous purchasing forecasts. This time, because its calculation was affected by the exceptional drop in sales in the previous period. As the printer fleet also changed abruptly (A3 printers “disappeared” from demand), these forecasts based on increasing cartridge sales for A3 models failed to adapt to the new reality.
Could this have been avoided? Of course, the pandemic-related shutdown was unforeseeable. But once it happened, many distributors were able to mitigate the adverse effect by basing their purchasing forecasts on the short-term needs of their customers measured in real time.
When a reseller uses Nubeprint, the “Shipping Forecast” app tells them, up to 90 days in advance, which cartridges and how many of each cartridge they will need to serve to each of their customers to keep the printers they actually have up and running. So, during the pandemic, stocks were conveniently sized to meet an actual demand for a period of typically 15 to 30 days, with a much tighter stock.
But, once the shutdown occurs, the new forecast provided month after month by Nubeprint’s “Shipping Forecast” app immediately reflects the plummeting consumption, as well as the change in fleet type where A3 models give way to A4. The distributor using Nubeprint has therefore managed the economic consequences of the pandemic much better, with optimized initial stock and much faster demand adjustment.
Nubeprint monitors in real time to identify when each input for each machine in question is going to run out, so that the distributor can buy knowing with a high degree of certainty what, when and to whom it will sell each cartridge.