In early 2020 Blue Sky Retail Solutions LLC and Heavy Tools, a Central European sporting goods fashion retailer, have entered into an agreement to pilot Blue Sky’s PlanR based merchandise financial planning cloud solution.
The scope of the agreement was to convert Heavy Tools’ historical retail financial data, including multi-year historical transaction data, merchandise and location hierarchies, into Blue Sky’s PlanR cloud solution. Blue Sky then demonstrated how PlanR can drive a centralized, cloud based merchandise financial planning process.
Blue Sky has supported Heavy Tools in validating extracted historical financial retail data. Following validation, historical transaction data was loaded into the PlanR platform’s retail financial planning module. With all the historical data in hand and knowing the processes and wishes of Heavy Tools, PlanR was quickly tailored for the needs of Heavy Tools. Additional KPIs requested by Heavy Tools were also added. Blue Sky’s team used Editor, PlanR’s configuration tool, to configure Heavy Tools’ specific KPIs and their calculations into the solution. The resulting cloud solution was then presented to Heavy Tools management for review and was evaluated in a trial environment by the retailer’s team.
Blue Sky has demonstrated to Heavy Tools management how PlanR supports a centralized and streamlined process in a live interactive demonstration. Both pre-season and in-season merchandise financial planning processes have been demonstrated for Heavy Tools, including the automated real-time calculation of specific KPI variables defined by Heavy Tools and added to the PlanR cloud solution by Blue Sky consultants.
The resulting process has become faster to execute and does not rely on manual calculations in excel worksheets, securing control of data integrity, data access security and transparency. Relying on standard functionality of PlanR, Heavy Tools can now model adverse and unforeseen events in “what-if” analysis scenarios quickly, calculating all impacts across the financial plans with all KPIs, such as changes in foreign currency conversion rates.
Heavy Tools is in the process of evaluating its Enterprise Resource Planning solution in order to streamline its core ERP processes and data flows. After the ERP evaluation and modernization activity is completed, Heavy Tools will have the ability to integrate planning processes and leverage end to end seamless retail financial planning capabilities provided.
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