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The Business Integration Audit:  Is Your Organization Ready For Integration?

A good forecast without a business environment that supports integration is of little value.

UT’s Mark Moon has developed a template for business integration assessments.

By Mark A. Moon
Mark A. Moon, Ph.D.. is the Marketing & Supply Chain Management Department Head and an Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville
October 5, 2015

In my research over the last few decades, I’ve discovered that a good forecast without a business environment that supports integration is of little value. A forecast is one element of good business decision-making, and without effective cross-functional integration it is difficult for companies to effectively utilize demand forecasts and make decisions that maximize outcomes for the enterprise as a whole.

To really achieve integration, more focus needs to be directed to the organizational structure necessary for success or the corporate culture that so influences individual behavior. A firm must address organizational structure, integrative processes (such as S&OP), and integrative culture.

I’ve developed a template for business integration assessments that uses these three dimensions. This template can be used either for self-assessment or to guide an engagement to perform an unbiased assessment from an external auditor.

The following tables describe elements of organizational structure and integrative culture that range from “worst practice,” or Stage 1, to “best practice,” or Stage 4.  For purposes of brevity, and because numerous maturity models exist for assessing it, integrative processes is not included. Instead of S&OP, which is a bad descriptor in integrative processes for many reasons, I use Demand/Supply Integration (DSI).


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