Orkla is the leading branded consumer products company in the Nordics, and one of Norway’s largest companies. The group has a long and colourful history dating back to 1654. Over the years, Orkla has been active in industries as diverse as metals, pulp & paper, chemicals and media. Since 2011, the company has focused on becoming a pure branded consumer goods company.
Orkla Foods is the largest business area within the group, accounting almost 50% of sales. With hundreds of brands in the portfolio, and close to 50 production facilities, it is easy to imagine the complexities Orkla Foods faces when it comes to coordinating its planning activities.
A challenging environment
Patrik Färdow, COO at Orkla Foods sets the scene, “The planning situation at our plants is highly complex. We deal with a large number of SKUs, and in combination with campaigns and seasonality, it’s a challenging environment. Historically, our planning team has been working with the planning functionalities in our ERP system, however the solution could only generate unconstrained plans which didn’t take production capacity and material availability into account. This left us with plans that needed a lot of manual adjustment just to make them possible to execute. It also meant we had massive challenges whenever something changed in terms of delivery priorities, plant capacity or materials availability. And this of course happens all the time.
“To become a truly agile branded consumer goods company, and improve our performance, we understood that we had to do this differently,” says Färdow.