Unilever USA is the biggest market for Unilever with a broad portfolio of brands across dozens of product categories and businesses such as beauty and personal care, home care, tea and many more. Managing such a complex and diverse portfolio posed a challenge during the pandemic as teams needed a flexible planning tool to enable the fastest reaction to constantly changing market signals.
The finance team, partnering with the Unilever S&OP team, was looking for a solution to streamline and accelerate their so-called Cash-up process which reconciles the volume from the Anaplan Demand Planning Module into Oracle PBCS in order to accurately reflect the financial numbers within the P&L. The difficulty was that the process was largely manual and hard to maintain and utilize which precluded the team from doing more value-adding activities like analysis and scenario planning.
The Anaplan Connected Planning Platform was chosen to automate the cash-up process which was built on a heavy Python script and multiple Excels. The project was delivered by a blended team consisting of the Anaplan experts from Advanced and business experts from Unilever which was instrumental in launching an MVP (minimum viable product) in a record time of only two months.
The main functional specifics of the tool are as follows: