By Improving Forecast Accuracy, Enesco Adds to its Collection of Satisfied Customers
Enesco Limited is renowned worldwide for innovative and humorous gifts, stylish home décor, imaginative garden wares and desirable collectables. Their outstanding selection of high-quality products encompasses the well-known brand names of Border Fine Arts, Country Artists, Enesco, Gund and Lilliput Lane, and includes licenses for all-time favorites such as Peter Rabbit, Disney, Classic Winnie the Pooh and Coronation Street. In 2012, the company became the exclusive distributors for the Demdaco portfolio collection in the UK and Europe.
In 2012, it was a challenge for Enesco to create accurate forecasts for its vast number of SKUs even though it was clear that the company was losing sales due to product shortages triggered by poor forecasts. The forecasting process was cumbersome—Enesco tried to analyze too many products and implemented a
laborious process of producing an initial top-down forecast based on a budget which was monitored monthly by a committee.
Over the course of 20 years, Enesco had researched a number of forecasting solutions without finding suitable software to meet its needs, primarily due to the cost of implementing these products. As a medium-sized business, Enesco felt it was critical to find an accurate forecasting system that could be integrated seamlessly while also representing good value for the cost. The company came up empty-handed prior to evaluating Forecast Pro. “Before evaluating Forecast Pro, we couldn’t find a forecasting solution with a sensible budget that provided an immediate return,” explains Clive Williams, Business Analyst.
Enesco installed Forecast Pro in January 2013, finding the interface to be so user-friendly that the team needed no training to get the solution up and running. In only three months, the team started producing accurate forecasts and began to realize several improvements across the business including:
- Sales up by over 8% in 2013 vs. 2012
- Delivery lead times improved:
- Orders shipped within 1 week of order up from 68% in 2012 to 78% in 2013
- Orders taking more than 2 weeks cut from 20% in 2012 to 13% in 2013
- Stock reduced by 12% vs. 2012: top-selling lines by 5% and other products by 27%
- Shortages down by 60% vs. 2012
The stock availability graphs below highlight two examples of the improvements Enesco has seen since it began using Forecast Pro—major decreases in both lead time for existing products and unfulfilled demand.
Lead Time for Existing Products
Relying on the forecasts created using Forecast Pro, Enesco saw an increase in sales in 2013—surpassing its original sales targets—as a result of better product availability and reduced inventory. The company expects to see continued improvement in forecast accuracy moving forward as it fine tunes the forecasting models and expands its use of customized reporting.