The real value of planning systems for manufacturers is that they serve as a communication and coordination vehicle for breaking down interdepartmental barriers. The plan includes all major activities required for producing a product, and is developed top-down from the best available prediction of demand (forecast). The plans and activities relate directly back to demand, the satisfaction of which is the definition of customer service. This centralized, coordinated plan, therefore, keeps everybody pulling in the same direction, working toward the same goal.
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