What is a Production Forecast for a Manufacturing Plant?

Production Forecasts are considered planning models and are often used by production and plant managers to estimate a plant’s production for the remaining months of the year. Key functionality in this type of planning template automatically displays actual amounts by item for the year-to-date periods. These figures are driven from price and quantity figures. Each tab in the template represents a different plant. The chart on top compares each plant side-by-side for actual and forecasted figures. You will find an example of this type of planning template below.

Purpose of Plant Production Forecasts

Manufacturing companies use Plant Production Forecasts to get a continuous view of expected revenues from each product delivered by a plant. When used as part of good business practices in a Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A) department, a company can improve its revenue and profit visibility, as well as, reduce the chances that managers make inferior decisions because they lack insight into the expected product revenue from forecasted production.

Plant Production Forecast Example

Here is an example of a Production Forecast input form by product and plant.

Production Forecast for a Manufacturing Plant Example

Production Forecast for a Manufacturing Plant Example

Production Forecast for a Manufacturing Plant ExampleYou can find hundreds of additional examples here.

Who Uses This Type of Planning Template?

The typical users of this type of planning template are: CFOs, plant and production managers, budget managers.

Other Planning Templates Often Used in Conjunction with Plant Production Forecasts

Progressive Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A) Departments sometimes use several different Plant Production Forecasts, along with labor forms, capex, other operating expense forms and other management and control tools.

Where Does the Data for Analysis Originate From?

The Actual (historical transactions) data typically comes from enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems like: Microsoft Dynamics 365 (D365) Finance, Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central (D365 BC), Microsoft Dynamics AX, Microsoft Dynamics NAV, Microsoft Dynamics GP, Microsoft Dynamics SL, Sage Intacct, Sage 100, Sage 300, Sage 500, Sage X3, SAP Business One, SAP ByDesign, Acumatica, Netsuite and others.

In analyses where budgets or forecasts are used, the planning data most often originates from in-house Excel spreadsheet models or from professional corporate performance management (CPM/EPM) solutions.

What Tools are Typically used for Reporting, Planning and Dashboards?

Examples of business software used with the data and ERPs mentioned above are:

  • Native ERP report writers and query tools
  • Spreadsheets (for example Microsoft Excel)
  • Corporate Performance Management (CPM) tools (for example Solver)
  • Dashboards (for example Microsoft Power BI and Tableau)

Corporate Performance Management (CPM) Cloud Solutions and More Examples