OUTPERFORM Planning at Westland Kaasspecialiteiten B.V.

Westland Kaas: Significantly improved forecasts

Westland Kaas has been using REMIRA OUTPERFORM Planning software since 2009. In 2020, it was time for a system reboot: the import and handling of special offers, as well as the balance between demand, supply and inventory, needed to be updated. The number of Excel files used in planning also needed to be reduced. The company wanted to benefit from the new developments brought by OUTPERFORM. The focus here was on improving the design of the entire forecasting process.

Westland Kaasspecialiteiten B.V.

Westland Kaasspecialiteiten B.V. is a Dutch cheese producer that is one of the largest privately owned cheese companies in the country, with a 12% share of the total Dutch cheese market. In addition to the Netherlands, the company also trades cheese in Germany, Belgium, Italy and Spain, among other countries. Westland Kaas received the "Dutch Family Business Award 2014" and also places great emphasis on sustainability in products, packaging and logistics. Westland Kaas is a member of MVO Nederland, a Dutch organization that promotes corporate social responsibility.

Go to the Westland Kaasspecialiteiten B.V. Website

The Challenges 

There were several challenges for the Dutch cheese manufacturer: One batch of cheese can produce several types of cheese during its ripening process, as the ripening time determines the classification of the cheese. The ripening time can vary from a few weeks to several months. In order to determine the right amount of cheese to produce, the demand for different types of cheese at the right time must be converted into a demand that triggers the right supply offer. Second, there is a lot of promotional activity in the retail channels of the cheese industry. There is a significant effort to coordinate these promotions and analyze their success to get the best forecast. Changes in the sales promotion also need to be applied to the offer to check the availability of the product. Updating the interface between the M3 ERP system and OUTPERFORM Planning also became an important issue, as the old package required extensive corrections by OUTPERFORM to capture the data correctly. Now we get all the data we can from M3, with Westland recognizing the ERP system as the backbone for input data.

"One of the clearest definitions of project success was that spreadsheets would no longer be needed. We have achieved this goal with OUTPERFORM. Our planners are running a solid process every day, every hour, and they are very satisfied."

Arjan Westland, IT-Leiter Westland Kaas Group

The Solution

OUTPERFORM Planning is used at Westland Kaas to create a reliable demand plan and check the forecast against actual sales. The software plans the supply of raw cheese and packaged products in a schedule and takes care of ripening and shelf life. As a result, purchasing and production orders are optimally managed.

Westland Kaas wanted to stay as close as possible to the OUTPERFORM planning standard in order to benefit best from new developments. Therefore, the company followed the well-known 80-20 rule, according to which 80% is standard and 20% is specific customization. This meant that some processes were designed differently than we were used to. The most important factor was the employees, who needed to know how to use the new application. With the upgrade to OUTPERFORM Planning Standard, everything is now back under one roof and the clutter of redundant tables and files has been reduced. A key element of the upgrade was also improving the accuracy of the demand, supply and inventory triangle.

The upgrade also added sales promotion and forecasting capabilities. This simplifies and improves the sales promotion process and reduces the effort in these areas.

The Impact

Westland Kaas achieved more control over operations with OUTPERFORM Planning by collecting all necessary supply chain information in one place. This provided a clear overview of stock levels and expected shortages without the need for managers to work through multiple Excel files. This was extremely valuable in managing the supply disruptions caused by COVID-19.


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