Bus, motorcoach manufacturer selects technology to enable intermittent demand forecasting technology
Belmont, MA — October 15, 2003 — Prevost Car, a North American manufacturer of buses and motorcoaches, announced this week it has chosen Smart Software's SmartForecasts Enterprise, with its intermittent demand forecasting technology, to help manage its aftermarket parts operations in Canada and the United States.
Seventy percent of Prevost's 40,000 parts have intermittent, slow-moving demand. Prevost said it would integrate SmartForecasts directly with its SAP enterprise resource planning (ERP) system and deploy the new integrated system before the end of this year.
"We need to have the right parts in the right place to support our customers," explained Dave Gilbert, director of logistics at Prevost. "However, we also need to improve our performance in this area. We evaluated a number of forecasting solutions, and are confident that SmartForecasts will not only help us improve our inventory allocation but also reduce transportation and inventory costs."
The choice of SmartForecasts capped a two-year study of ways to improve inventory deployment and customer service, as well as reduce costs, at Prevost. The evaluation included a test project using a representative sample of the manufacturer's aftermarket parts inventory. The test's results indicated that using SmartForecasts' inventory stocking recommendations might reduce the company's current safety stock levels as much as 18 percent.
"With most of our parts having intermittent demand, it was complex to properly manage our inventory," said Gilbert, who was leader of the study team. "Because solving intermittent demand is so important to us, we really emphasized it in our evaluations."
Prevost said it would use SmartForecasts to obtain an accurate prediction of future demand for aftermarket parts at each of its multiple warehouses in North America. The company also intends to use SmartForecasts' ability to estimate safety stock requirements at both the warehouse and distribution center levels. Prevost will then use the demand intelligence in its SAP ERP system to create the final replenishment plan, improve inventory allocation and help manufacturing operations produce the required number of parts to meet customer demand.
Headquartered in Sainte-Claire, Quebec, Prevost Car is jointly owned by Volvo Bus Corporation and Britain's Henlys Group PLC. Prevost manufactures intercity touring coaches and is a world-leader in the production of coach shells for high-end motorhome and specialty conversion. Prevost Car also has six service centers and seven parts warehouses sited in Canada and in the United States.