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The Little (Illustrated) Guide to Operational Forecasting: A short introduction to the practice and pitfalls of short term forecasting, and how to increase its value to the business. (PDF)

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This short book cuts through the complexity and confusion surrounding short term forecasting providing a simple and accessible guide to the practice and some of the pitfalls. The

For a Beyond Budgeting audience this book is helpful because many organisations base their (medium term0 business forecasts on operational forecasts produced for supply planning purposes and to drive S&OP processes. And while the practices are very different - operational forecasts are usually more detailed and focussed on the very short term - most of the basic principles of good forecasting practice apply in both domains. So it helps everyone produce better forecasts and enables finance practitioners better understand the challenge that operational forecasters face.

Written as a series of short 'lessons' each of which is supported by simple hand drawn graphics it guides the readers through the tangled thickets of the subject, busting myths and revealing shortcuts.

The book is organised into five chapters:

  1. The purpose of forecasting - why we do it.
  2. Understanding demand - the key to good forecasting
  3. Forecasting methods - a quick overview
  4. Understanding forecast performance - how to get better
  5. Managing forecast performance - good practice and common pitfalls

Note that this is generated as a unique watermarked PDF file and cannot not be shared without the authors permission.

About the Author

Steve Morlidge has been involved with Beyond Budgeting since its inception in 1998. As Controller of one of Unilever's largest subsidiaries he was one of the original sponsors and he subsequently led a Beyond Budgeting change project for the whole enterprise.

He is the author of six books on Beyond Budgeting related topics and completed a PhD exploring the links between Beyond Budgeting and systems theory. He is a visiting Professor at BBP University and a visiting fellow at Cranfield University.

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You will get a PDF (33MB) file