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10 Best Distribution Requirements Planning Software in 2023

1. 🥇Streamline 👈 our choice

Distribution Requirements Planning Software Solution

Overview: Streamline is the world’s leading Distribution Requirements Planning Software Provider for manufacturers, distributors, retailers, e-commerce, brands, and 3PL.

Headquartered in New York, Streamline has 200+ partners, 1,200+ enterprise customers, and thousands of free users that rely on its platform worldwide. Streamline’s AI-powered software platform helps manufacturers, retailers, and distributors grow efficiently and increase their profits.

Pros:

  • Easy setup, no coding required.
  • Free for core features.
  • Easily connects to any ERP system or multiple at once.
  • Ensures 99+% inventory availability.
  • Achieves high forecast accuracy using AI-based forecasting.
  • Reduces out-of-stock events by up to 98%.
  • Cuts excess inventory by up to 50%.
  • Reduces time spent on forecasting, planning, and ordering by up to 90%.
  • Generates up to 56x ROI in one year.

Cons: The free edition has some limitations.

Platform: Web browser, macOS or Windows.

Deployment options: Cloud or On-premise.

User-review rating: 5/5.

Pricing:

“If you are using Excel spreadsheets for Demand & Supply planning, move quickly to this software that will certainly make your planning much more efficient, capitalize benefits very fast, and make your life much easier.”


Distribution requirements planning is an approach for reducing the amount of frozen working capital that’s tied up in inventory with service-level goals across multiple stock-keeping units (SKUs).

Benefits of the Streamline’s distribution requirements planning solution:

GMDH distribution requirements planning software system

1. Fast and intuitive user interface

Streamline software is efficient and effective. Therefore you can concentrate on long terms goals and business development.

2. Seamless integration of company data sources

Bidirectional connectivity allows you to pull in data from your sales system into Streamline, as well as automatically export the forecasted order information back to your ERP system.

3. The smooth and fast implementation process

A successful implementation requires the coordination of many variable factors. The Streamline team is well aware of the gamut of sales and ERP systems available on the market nowadays. Thus, they will make sure you and your team are ready to go on promptly.

4. The ideal fit of the business process in your company

Distribution Requirements Planning Software needs to be aligned with your business goals and all of your company’s other processes.

There are many factors to consider when choosing the Distribution Requirements Planning Software system for your company. These might include the total cost of ownership of the selected solution, reliability, high-quality support, and finally, your ability to evaluate all features before making the decision.

5. Syncing ordering dates across SKUs

What do you do if your Min/Max replenishment strategy built-in into the ERP system throws a purchasing signal for one SKU, but other SKUs of the same supplier do not need replenishment yet? Min/Max ordering signals come per item while businesses issue purchase orders per supplier. So you either ignore the alert and have a shortage later or purchase a full container excessively. As opposed to ERP methods, Streamline raises purchasing signals per supplier. Streamline software predicts all purchasing signals during the next order cycle via a discrete-event simulation and purchases beforehand to have a smooth purchasing process with constant order cycle, or purchasing full containers (order cycle is variable), or EOQ.

6. Replacing formulas with Discrete-event simulation

Inventory replenishment is based on calculating future inventory levels during the next lead time and sometimes beyond that. That means your formula needs to account for numerous upcoming consumption and replenishment events. Sometimes it’s doable, but once you start dealing with event schedules like a shipment schedule or multiple orders in transit Excel gives up almost immediately.

While our competitors usually simplify calculations without colliding events realistically, Streamline creates a timeline with a one-day resolution and puts all schedules onto the timeline. Then Streamline executes the event sequence giving us the most accurate information about the company’s inventory levels with one-day precision. Sometimes it’s just a more precise method compared to replenishment formulas, but in many cases, it’s the only way to accommodate for the real-world supply chain complexity.

7. Using AI (Artificial intelligence) to forecast demand

Estimating seasonality, price elasticity, or top-down forecasting is not enough nowadays. Market changes very dynamically, and it’s hard to predict if your history of sales is yet relevant enough to the current situation and can be used to extrapolate into the future. That’s an area where we use our proprietary AI, so we only apply time series forecasting techniques, predictors, and level changes if AI says it’s appropriate to apply – just like if you are keeping an eye on every SKU every day.

8. Group EOQ (Economic order quantity)

Are you using EOQ in your work? If not, it is worth giving EOQ a closer look as this inventory planning concept significantly reduces your holding and ordering costs. Unfortunately, classic EOQ is calculated per SKU and not a group of SKUs. In a real-world supply chain, purchase orders contain several SKUs, if not hundreds. While Streamline supports classic EOQ calculation, it also offers group EOQ that goes far beyond the traditional approach making EOQ applicable to purchase orders with groups of SKUs.

That becomes possible thanks to the ability of Streamline to sync the order date for a group of items. Then Streamline moves the synchronization barrier back and forth to find the best order cycle for the group of SKUs and automatically minimizes the combination of holding and ordering costs.


Price: Request pricing.

Demo: Get a demo.


Distribution requirements planning in Streamline

Let us take a closer look at Streamline features specific to distribution requirements planning:

Get a demo with Streamline experts to see how you can improve the distribution requirements planning process in your company.

Too much manual work in Excel?

See what Streamline can do for you

  • 99+% inventory availability.
  • Up to 99% forecast accuracy.
  • Up to 98% reduction in stockouts.
  • Up to 50% reduction in excess inventory.
  • 1-5 percentage points margin improvement.
  • Up to 56X ROI in one year. 100% ROI in the first 3 months.
  • Up to 90% reduction in time spent on forecasting, planning, and ordering.

Watch the distribution requirements planning capabilities video

Learn and see in action the key features and benefits of GMDH  Streamline software.


Streamline easily integrates with your ERP system or multiple at once

The solution provides bi-directional integrations with any data source, ERP system, or multiple at once, including: ODBC, Custom API, Excel, SAP ERP, SAP S/4HANA, SAP Business One, Oracle NetSuite, Oracle JD Edwards EnterpriseOne, Microsoft Dynamics 365, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central (BC), Microsoft Dynamics GP, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, QuickBooks Online, QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise, Odoo, Extensiv Order Manager (Skubana), Spire, Unleashed, Cin7, Fishbowl, Shopify, Sellercloud, Exact Online, Finale Inventory, Acumatica, Pronto Xi, and other systems.

Distribution Requirements Planning Software Features

Accurate Demand Forecast

Is demand forecast driving your inventory level?

Streamline looks at your historical sales data and automatically chooses the best statistical model to determine consumer demand in the future.

You can also manage, re-evaluate, and modify the forecast based on the additional information known internally by the management team or provided by your vendors and suppliers.

Projected Inventory Levels

Do you know the most efficient quantity of each item to carry in your inventory? Having too much or too little inventory has an associated cost and is not making the best use of your inventory investment.

The Streamline’s Projected Inventory Level feature calculates and displays the inventory level for future periods. These projected inventory levels are based on the current inventory, incoming supply, and forecasted demand, determined by your inventory targets and forecast needs.

The periods with future inventory level shortages are marked in red and overstocks in green. This allows you to ensure you are not overbuying, storing, and tying up capital needlessly while also providing sufficient inventory to prevent stockouts.

Order Planning

Do you always know when and which products to order based on your demand forecast and the constraints imposed by your suppliers and/or manufacturers?

You can create the perfect order instantly while maintaining your targeted inventory levels and ensuring the most effective use of your inventory investment. Streamline automatically generates the replenishment suggestions and creates the Order plan. The software calculates and provides your purchasing system (e.g., MRP systems) with an optimized order proposal. A reorder point, a minimum level, and a maximum level are also available for compatibility with MRP systems.

Stockout/Overstock alerts

Do you think a high degree of automation and alert-driven inventory planning is vital to your business?

The software highlights any issues with short or excess inventory. Additionally, it provides and then provides recommendations on how to optimize your inventory. The projected inventory level settings can also mark exceptions such as shortfall, potential stockouts, and excess stock.

Inventory Optimization

How do you define your optimal inventory level?

Streamline prevents the situation of short or excess inventory. Usage of inventory optimization tool will help you target service levels, reduce inventory, and make the best use of your inventory investment.

New Products Forecasting

Do you have new units that replace discontinued products or any very new commodity with limited market history?

Not a big deal! Streamline can link such profiles to the sales history of similar, existing products (substitutions) or set seasonal coefficients. This approach allows you to get a reliable forecast for those fresh items as well.

Distribution Requirements Planning Software Definitions


What is demand forecasting?

Demand forecasting is a process of understanding and predicting customer demand for a particular product or category. This process is based on the analysis of historical data of sales and market trends, with the following forecast based on the statistical forecast models such as seasonal, linear, or constant trend. The Supply chain management process depends on the future customer’s demand and the accuracy of trends prediction. That’s why demand planners take into account forecast accuracy and forecast error levels when doing demand forecasting. This is easy to get the most efficient levels using Streamline for demand forecasting. Streamline provides accurate demand forecast by using a build-in expert system that automatically analyzes each item for levels, seasonality, trends, and intermittency.

What is demand planning?

Demand planning is a business process of outlining and management of customer demand for products and services. Planning of a customer demand consists of a statistical forecast using the most appropriate model. As a result of the demand planning process, a company gets a sales plan that initiates a service-planning process, production, inventory planning, and revenue planning.

What is revenue planning?

Revenue planning is about the management of the resources in the company. In order to accomplish the expected revenue, the following things should be taken into account: analysis of existing resources, planning expected expenses and/or investments in your business. Streamline warns you about excess or lack of inventory by highlighting these items in the inventory report. It also calculates the turnover of each item and gives the trend in the future based on the forecast.

What is inventory planning & optimization?

Inventory planning means the process of managing on-hand items as well as making timely orders to determine the optimal quantity and to prevent overstocks and stockouts. The process of inventory optimization aims to balance between stock-keeping units (SKUs) and working capital to get the maximal income. Streamline has powerful capabilities for optimizing inventory levels, calculating safety stocks, and generating optimal purchasing plans. It also allows filtering items by supplier and road the order of different products to fit a container capacity the best.

What is material requirements planning?

Material requirements planning (MRP) is a process that includes a production planning, scheduling, and inventory control system used to manage manufacturing processes. In order to calculate what material is required and when an order can go into production, an MRP process takes into account information on the Bill of Materials (BOM), production plan, and material plan. Streamline allows you to generate a plan of material requirements based on the demand forecasts of finished products and a bill of materials (BoM).

What is the timeline for the implementation of Distribution Requirements Planning Software?

Overall, the process takes 1-6 weeks.

Implementation Roadmap

  1. Data Connection – 0-3 weeks
  2. Connecting Streamline to your company’s database to retrieve historical data and push out purchasing suggestions. This is on your company’s IT team, but we support them all the way. 0-3 weeks depending on IT team availability, database complexity and data validation.

  3. Configuration – 0-1 week
  4. Configuring Streamline to split the forecasting and planning tasks across users. Data validation 0-1 week.

  5. Training and Validation – 1 week
    • Overview training
    • Company-specific training
    • Forecast validation
    • Purchase recommendations validation

  6. Documenting the Process – 0-1 week

What our customers say about us

Eric Tewey

Streamline has made a major difference in our forecasting and manufacturing planning. The ease of use, flexibility, and accuracy has far exceeded our expectations. Streamline has helped take our forecasting accuracy from average to world-class; which has a very positive bottom line impact. In addition, to Streamline being a great tool for us, the customer service we receive is second to none: it’s impressive. The time invested in learning our business, our model, and our people has been greatly appreciated and shows in the results.

Vice President of IT at Swisher International
Jacob Shallman

GMDH Streamline is the small business demand forecasting dream come true. If you are too small for a huge ERP and big enough to need to track and forecast demand and reorders this is really the perfect tool. It integrates so nicely into QuickBooks and in one click runs your regular reports. It takes out all the hours and hours of manual updating. I love this tool.

See what Streamline can do for you




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1. Streamline

Streamline is a leading supply chain platform for modern S&OP process. It is built on proprietary technology and covers every aspect of demand and inventory planning, offering complete transparency across the entire supply chain. With a team of leading experts in data analysis, software development, business forecasting, and supply chain management, Streamline makes the modeling and forecasting algorithms accessible to non-mathematicians, enabling accurate and flexible forecasting for businesses. One of the key advantages of Streamline is a seamless integration with ERP/MRP systems and databases, making it easy for businesses to incorporate them into their existing workflows.

Streamline

Pros of using Streamline

  1. “Streamline is a game-changer when it comes to data analysis and predictive modeling.”
  2. “This inte­lligent software uses advance­d mathematical algorithms to accurately dete­rmine the ideal stock le­vels for our business operations.”

Cons of using SAP

  1. “Not user-friendly the appearance of the application, there is still work to be done to improve it. However, the company is moving in the right direction and there are already tangible changes for the better.”
  2. “It is a very sophisticated program, and it has taken us a while to get a grasp of it. Maybe some easy 1-2-3 guidance to help setup would be great.”

Leendert Paul D.

“Efficient Supply Chain Management”

“Its user-friendly interface reduces manual workload, leading to more accurate and time-efficient planning. This tool has significantly enhanced our supply chain operations.”

2. SAP Integrated Business Planning for Supply Chain

SAP Integrated Business Planning software offers planning and consolidation solutions that provide clients with financial forecasting, budgeting, scenario planning, consolidation and collaboration tools. It is absolutely possible to use this ERP for supply chain processes. Advantages and disadvantages of this solution were gathered on Capterra and G2 review platforms and listed below.

SAP integrated business planning

Pros of using SAP

  1. “As this is still a small group, I became familiar with their staff and made the support even more personable. Very easy to use, as you are basically setting up your hierarchies in Excel.”
  2. “Overall extremely pleased with the application. It was seamless in terms of installation and deployment.”

Cons of using SAP

  1. “Limited documentation on scripts. Training on scripts is very specialized and intensive.”
  2. “The user interface seems outdated. The functionality is confusing for beginners and we have to spend a lot of time training new employees.”

Matthew C.

“Legacy tool”

“The planning capability provides additional value to our supply chain”

3. Oracle Fusion Cloud Supply Chain Planning

Oracle Demantra is a demand management and supply chain management tool provided by Oracle. It helps in enabling automated forecast processes that simultaneously maps demand forecasting against factors such as supply restrictions, customer commitments and inventory counts.

Oracle Demantra

Pros of using Oracle Fusion Cloud Supply Chain Planning

  1. “The ability to pivot the series rather fluidly. It’s almost like a field list selection box for an Excel pivot table.”
  2. “It is an easier to use tool more in the form of a spreadsheet and in which data can be easily downloaded and uploaded. Also it has a inbuilt capabilities to integrate with other Oracle modules like advanced supply chain planning and order management.”

Cons of using Oracle Fusion Cloud Supply Chain Planning

  1. “Chaining and Member Management. For NPI and other related scenarios, it’s difficult for users to go through such a complex process.”
  2. “Issue with general levels like we were not able to consider historical data loaded in a general level to generate Forecast from a different forecasting profile. Example: Quantity_Form in Engine profile should be flexible enough to consider the data/column from General Level data table just like it takes from Sales_Data table.”

Himanshu. Y

“Oracle Fusion Cloud Supply Chain Planning review by Himanshu Yadav”

” 1. User friendly layout to review the data.
2. Using embedded feature, multiple dimensions data can be reviewed at one go.
3. Forecasting Techniques and flexibility to add Causal Factors.
4. Graphical representation option in Worksheet
…”

4. IBM Planning Analytics

IBM offers a comprehensive range of products and services to address supply chain management needs. Their solutions include supply chain partner data exchange, procurement and inventory planning, supply chain visibility and orchestration, and omnichannel order fulfillment optimization. IBM’s expertise lies in evolving supply chain planning and processes to reduce operational silos, respond to market disruptions, mitigate risk, and maintain business continuity.

IBM

Pros of using IBM Planning Analytics

  1. “A balanced database for large scale data deployments”
  2. “A flexible and easy-to-use Database”

Cons of using IBM Planning Analytics

  1. “Poor customer service”
  2. “Good and secure DB but costly”

Verified User in Computer Software

“This is a database and it is very fast compared to other databases.”

It is well designed and easily operated. The technical support is not up to the mark.

5. Anaplan

Anaplan is an American planning software company headquartered in San Francisco, California. Anaplan sells subscriptions for cloud-based business-planning software and provides data for decision-making purposes.

Anaplan

Pros using Anaplan

  1. “This software is great for companies looking for what-if scenario planning, forecasting and budgeting, workforce planning and tracking competitor data. It really has the all in one functionality for companies looking for a clean overview of their business.”
  2. “UI is like a spreadsheet for sure.”

Cons using Anaplan

  1. Initial setup requires a lot of learning and time. Their training session is several days and still requires additional follow up work and communication with their implementation team.
  2. “Graphs and data visualization is also far lacking compared with Tableau or even Excel.”

Nikhil L.

“Anaplan – Connecting Planning and Beyond”

I like the most about Anaplan is the customization capability and ease of development and usage. You can build anything and everything using your imagination and modeling skill sets. Anaplan has transformed the way connected planning solutions are thought through and developed. Sometimes it feels an overkill that certain functionalities are unavailable in Anaplan, and everything has to be developed through a custom code. Things like Delta functionality, more robust auditing capabilities, drill-through capabilities, and model locking are some of the things which come to mind.

6. Coupa Supply Chain Design & Planning

Coupa Supply Chain Design and Planning, powered by LLamasoft, empowers businesses to make smarter supply chain decisions by leveraging AI and advanced analytics. With a true digital twin of the extended supply chain, customers can gain valuable insights and make intelligent decisions faster. This transformative solution helps optimize supply chain operations and drive efficiency in decision-making processes.

Coupa

Pros of using Coupa:

  1. “A solid invoicing, purchase order, and supply chain management utility.”

Cons of using Coupa:

  1. “Solid tool for Network Optimization but documentation/training materials need to improve”

Kalidas K.

“Complete software that integrates sustainability into supply chain”

Very easy to learn and export data. Good for visualization and analysis. But less community groups and supports. Lack of Tutorial videos and training.

7. NetSuite Demand Planning

NetSuite is a software powered by Oracle. This is a powerful software with a lot of features which are good and bad at the same time. From pre-revenue startups to small and mid-size organizations, fast-growing businesses use NetSuite to automate core processes and get real-time insights into operational and financial performance.

NetSuite Demand Planning

Pros of using NetSuite

  1. “The business intelligence and reporting is excellent and it is easy to expand the use of the software and add new companies as business grows.”
  2. “All inclusive one stop ERP system good for small companies and scalable for the future. Reporting/view features are nice and reminders on the homepage & personalized dashboard are a good touch.”

Cons using NetSuite

  1. “Also, too many unexpected error messages and error messages that misrepresent the actual problem. These force us to google for answers.”
  2. “It is absolutely a nightmare to implement. It is way too complicated to function well. You need to be a developer to be able to do even the most basic augmentations. You might as well just build your own system from the ground up and save yourself the expensive NetSuite bill. The cost is huge and you can’t make adjustments to licenses without long contracts.”

Jon F.

“Great Value Cloudbased ERP – Best cloud solution on the market”

“Great experience overall. Time to implement took 6 month, but could have completed in 4. We waited longer to get system configured to meet more of our needs. Have maintained our subscription since 2013 and really like the ease of configuration and always being on the lates version and can take advantage of improvements without added cost for the most part. The business intelligence and reporting is excellent and it is easy to expand the use of the software and add new companies as business grows.”

Stefanie S.

“Don`t Use NetSuite”

“Implementation was a nightmare. During Go Live, they lost us tens of thousands of dollars by deleting dozens of sales by accident. Every aspect of it is not user friendly and requires extensive coding knowledge. It is completely the wrong choice for smaller businesses.”

8. e2open Planning Application Suite

e2open is a company that offers a connected supply chain platform. It aims to enhance collaboration across all channels, overcome market volatility, and minimize administration and risk in cross-border filing. e2open allows users to plan, execute, and track multimode shipments on a single platform, optimize shipping costs, and provide superior customer service.

e2open

Pros of using e2open Planning Application Suite

  1. “Everything is organized in such a manner that it is extremely simple to manage.”
  2. “Minimal but functional.”

Cons of using e2open Planning Application Suite

  1. “Data collection does take a little more time than desired and the system freezes from time to time, mainly due to the data-rich capabilities offered.”
  2. “Lack of ability to communicate with all other software working in”

Tabish A.

“Great software for supply chain management”

E2Open Supply Management is the ideal software for supply chain planning, monitoring and analytics that caters to a demand driven supply chain. The best function of the software is that it aligns multiple departments into one seamlessly, which is the need of the hour especially for large organizations that have several teams working on the same project and need perfect coordination. Well, there is a downside that I’ve faced with the software. Data collection does take a little more time than desired and the system freezes from time to time, mainly due to the data rich capabilities offered.

9. OMP Unison Planning

OMP is a company dedicated to helping businesses create more value in their supply chain. They offer smart ideas and solutions that deliver on their promises, aiming to boost supply chain excellence. OMP technology offerings include network design, demand management, S&OP (Sales & Operations Planning), operational planning, scheduling, cloud solutions, data management & integration, supply chain analytics, and value enhancers.

OMP

Pros of using OMP Unison Planning

  1. “OMP Plus software for Supply Chain Management and Planning”
  2. “Strong advanced planning capabilities “

Cons of using OMP Unison Planning

  1. “The interface is hard to learn, and you need to put in the time and resources to understand how to maneuver through it.”
  2. “S&OP balancing very complex.”

Verified User

“Useful tool for supply chain purposes”

OMP Plus allows for customization and solves complex problems and challenges. But customization is a bit hard and can’t be done by everyone, it requires investment in training

10. o9 Solutions Digital Brain Platform

The provider of an AI-powered planning and analytics platform that helps businesses transform their planning and decision-making capabilities across the digital landscape. The company offers a range of solutions, including demand planning with predictive analytics, supply chain forecasts, and what-if analysis. With its cloud-based business management platform, o9 Solutions enables organizations to drive digital transformations in integrated planning and operations.

09 solutions

Pros of using o9 Solutions Digital Brain Platform

  1. “o9 Solutions make integration simple”
  2. “Very user friendly”

Cons of using o9 Solutions Digital Brain Platform

  1. “Lags and erros that actually occur after refreshing a page.”
  2. “We encountered operational gaps in understanding our underlying data sets as a result of the Data Discovery process.”

Sagar K.

“Review of o9 solutions”

O9 supply chain solver is one of the best simulation offering o9 has. Also, the way o9 perform MRP planning is also interesting. O9 offers a lot of seamless integrations with other ERPs. Knowledge management of o9 solutions is not in depth compared to other software.Also, user experience and user interface is quite confusing in general.

About the Author:

Alex Koshulko, Ph.D. in Mathematical Modeling, Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), CEO and Co-founder at GMDH, supply chain planning expert with more than 10 years of experience in demand forecasting, inventory planning, and optimization. Forbes Councils Member.