Importance of Scoping in a Supply Chain Modeling project

Scoping is the most critical part of a Network modeling project ,however, it is not assigned the importance it deserves when Network modeling projects are planned. There is so much focus on other phases like data collection, analysis & validation, Baseline development etc. that the importance of this critical phase is overlooked (even though it finds its place in the project plan). Overlooking the importance of this critical phase can come back to haunt you during later phases (for example, when trying to sell your output and recommendation to stakeholders).

The following are some of the reasons that make scoping session really important in your project plan:

  • The most important reason for having a scoping session (or maybe multiple sessions) is to get stakeholders from multiple departments in the same room, and getting them involved right at the beginning of the project. This will ensure that there will be less pushback later in the project.
  • Scoping session will finalize the objective of the modeling project. Having all the stakeholders in the session will make sure that everyone understands and agrees on the objective of the modeling exercise.
  • Finalize what portion of your Supply Chain will be included in the project/study and what will be excluded and why. For example: Do you want to focus only on the Outbound Distribution network or will Inbound be a part of it as well? You can start mapping your in focus segment of the Supply Chain during the scoping session.
  • What are the key decision variables of the project? What is the desired format of the output/final deliverable of the modeling exercise?
  • Project desired start and end dates. This is also an opportunity to let stakeholders know if the dates are too aggressive.

Disclaimer: This is a personal blog site and views and perspectives expressed here are solely my own and do not express the views or opinions of my employer.

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