Hit enter to search or ESC to close

Contact us

Email:  info@profitand.com

Profit& Ltd
68 King William Street,
United Kingdom

Telephone: +44 1158 943 983

Profit& GmbH
Neuer Wall 75
20354 Hamburg

Telephone: +49 40 22859120

Profit& Sp. z o.o
Ul. Złota 59
Skylight p. 14
00-120 Warsaw

Telephone: +44 7818 568970

integrated planning, Manufacturing

Integrated Business Planning: A 10-Step Guide for Manufacturing

Whilst Manufacturing businesses focus on driving innovation and growth through R&D and adoption of advanced technologies, they are also challenged to find strategies to improve productivity and compete in a volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous market environment.  Many are turning to Integrated Business Planning (IBP) to surface issues that will impact their business earlier, and take actions to address these before they become risks that threaten growth, margins and competitiveness.

IBP requires a common platform that connects critical planning processes, data and people to monitor performance, and focus management to collaborate effectively on what matters to success.   In essence, IBP platforms deliver the visibility to drive the right actions to secure sustainable growth and profitability into the future.

To ensure you choose the right digital platform for your specific integrated planning needs, and effectively integrate it into operations, it’s critical to adopt a systematic approach.  In this blog we recommend 10 key steps on the journey to adoption of an Integrated Business Planning platform. Here's our step-by-step guide:


  1. Assess Current Processes and Pain Points: The first step is to evaluate your existing end-to-end processes.  Identify connections and interdependencies between business units and consider where processes falter, and specific areas of concern that can be targeted for improvement.  Question if current planning methods are adequate to meet business needs, as there is little to be gained from implementing existing inefficient processes into a new tool.  And finally, consider where digital tools can add value and additional opportunities for improvement that your existing tools cannot deliver.

  2. Define Objectives and Requirements: Determine the specific objectives you want to achieve from an IBP platform. These should be business impacts and might include improving production efficiency, optimising inventory management, reducing excess and obsolete, enhancing collaboration across teams, or reducing costs. Consider the essential features and functionalities you need in a platform to address your specific requirements.

  3. Calculate Return on Investment (ROI): Assess the potential return on investment of implementing a digital planning platform. Consider factors such as cost savings, productivity gains, revenue growth, and competitive advantages. Calculate the payback period and projected RoI to justify the investment to stakeholders.  Consider phasing your project to address the highest value opportunities first to show early returns.  Be sure to check back against value delivery during the project, as a valuable tool to ensure your project stays focused.

  4. Research Available Solutions: Research available digital planning platforms that align with your objectives and requirements. Look for solutions specifically designed for manufacturing, considering factors such as scalability, ease of use, cost-effectiveness, and compatibility with existing systems. Consider cloud-based and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) options, as they often offer flexibility and affordability.

  5. Evaluate Vendor Reputation and Support: Assess the reputation and track record of potential vendors. Look for vendors with comprehensive use cases, reference clients and a partner network with a proven track record of successful implementations in manufacturing businesses.  Additionally, consider the level of customer support and training offered by the vendor, as this will be crucial during the implementation and adoption process.

  6. Identify An Implementation Partner:  Look for implementation specialists with experience of implementing IBP in a Manufacturing environment.  Ensure that they are accredited to implement the vendor software that you are considering.  Some service providers are accredited by multiple vendors, so consider if you need them to assist in the selection process.  They can help you evaluate which solution is the best fit for your business based on your specific requirements, budget and market sector.  Find out if they can offer any pre-built applications or accelerators that can reduce the time to value.  A good service provider will help you to prioritise requirements and devise an implementation plan that delivers early returns for your business.   They will also be able to demonstrate a strong project management approach that will eliminate risks and issues as they arise and ensure that your delivery remains focused on expected value and RoI.

  7. Conduct Demos and Trials: Schedule demos or trials with selected vendors to see their platforms in action. This allows you to evaluate the user interface, functionality, and ease of use firsthand. During demos, involve key stakeholders from different departments to ensure that the platform meets the needs of various users across your business.

  8. Create an Implementation Plan: Develop a detailed implementation plan that outlines the steps, timeline, and resources required to deploy the digital planning platform successfully. Assign roles and responsibilities to team members, and establish clear milestones and checkpoints to track progress.  When tracking progress, be sure to check back to the expected value and return on investment.  Traditionally, IT projects will reference timelines and budget against expected delivery.  This is essential of course, but you also need to keep a close track of value delivery too.

  9. Provide Training and Support: Ensure that employees receive adequate training and support to use your integrated planning platform effectively. Offer training sessions, tutorials, and documentation to help users familiarise themselves with the platform and maximise its capabilities. Additionally, provide ongoing support and guidance as users adapt to the new system.

  10. Monitor and Measure Performance: Continuously monitor the performance of your integrated planning platform and track key metrics to assess its impact on operations. Solicit feedback from users and stakeholders to identify areas for improvement and make adjustments as needed. Regularly review goals and objectives to ensure that the platform continues to align with business priorities.

By following these steps, manufacturers will effectively and confidently embark on their journey towards implementing an IBP platform, and successfully unlock the benefits of improved efficiency that helps management teams steer a course to long term profitable growth.

For insight into how Profit& support Integrated Business Planning projects take a look at our implementation process infographic.


If you’d like support to evaluate your planning needs and journey towards integrated business planning, get in touch with us today.  We’d be delighted to help you.



integrated planning Manufacturing
Francesco D'Aguanno

Francesco D'Aguanno

Co-CEO and responsible for Southern Europe at Profit&. Francesco supports the finance functions of the largest public and private organisation in embracing the digital transformation, by providing a unique mix of managerial accounting skills with the best technologies for Financial Planning and Analysis. After being a Senior Manager for one of the Big Four, Francesco founded Profit& Ltd to promote an organisational culture of profitability and accountability by bringing his experience and achievements to the service of CFOs, Tax Directors and Business Controllers worldwide. He has a MSc in Industrial Management, an MBA and he is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP®).

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.