McCormick is a global leader in the manufacture, marketing and distribution of spices, herbs, seasonings, specialty foods and flavours. It supplies 9 of the top 10 multinational food manufacturers and 8 of the top 10 global food service restaurants. Within the UK it has a turnover of £65 million. Prior to introducing Reflex, McCormick had multiple legacy systems providing standalone solutions for forecasting, planning and scheduling of which the later was performed using in-house Excel based spreadsheets.
The separate systems were inaccurate, time consuming to maintain and there were known issues with the accuracy of the data. This led to little confidence in the planning process, with the planned stock levels either being maintained at a very high level or with factory resources maintained such that short notice changes could be actioned rapidly. Productivity levels were low whilst, at the same time, wastage was relatively high.
The integrated Reflex suite of planning modules consolidated the disparate systems into an integrated solution. This delivered a forecast with weekly promotions, capacity planning, materials and packaging requirements and a finite scheduler for both day-to-day usage and resource usage across a factory. Optimisation of the factory has reduced the number of changeovers and increased available production time. In turn this has meant fewer resources required to operate factory production lines. A considered decision on the optimum inventory level feeds directly into the factory plan enabling it to meet service level requirements.
Long term planning predictability, improved control of inventory requirements, along with maintenance of service levels, resulted from the introduction of Reflex. Inventory levels have dropped from £4.6m to £3.0m over a 9-month period, with headcount reductions for both office staff and factory operators also achieved.
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"My time spent on preparing and generating reports for our S&OP process has been reduced from 7 days a month to 1, and I can be confident the figures are valid"- Chris Meir, Planning Manager.
"The factory is not required to have to react to sudden changes in demand as it used to. This has all been accounted for within the system, all changes are now minor in nature which makes it easy to work with."- Colin Firth, Factory Manager.
"From a business perspective we are very confident in the results Reflex generates to predict our future requirements, which has improved productivity across all departments which reduces our costs which in turn directly improves our profitability."- Rachel Stafford, Supply Chain Executive.