Sales Forecasting Practices in Macedonian Small-Scale Manufacturing Plants

Sales Forecasting Practices in Macedonian Small-Scale Manufacturing Plants

Slagjana Stojanovska (Integrated Business Faculty, Macedonia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-6220-9.ch005
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Abstract

This chapter presents the findings of the latest research results in terms of sales forecasting practices in 30 small-scale manufacturing plants in Macedonia. Findings about organizational sales forecasting practices are obtained through three sets of main issues: design, selection, and evaluation. Design issues are related with the purpose/use of forecast, types of data, time horizon, and frequency of sales forecasting modification. Selection issues are related to the most popular sales forecasting techniques, and several evaluation issues are elaborated in detail. Macedonian sales forecast practices of Macedonian small-scale manufacturing participants may be of interest to similar companies in the world, especially in developing countries.
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Literature Review Of Sales Forecast Issues

Sales forecasting is a concept for projection of future demand for the company’s products. It is “the art and science of predicting future events” (Heizer & Render, 2004, p. 104) to reduce uncertainty about changes in the environment and to predict “what the future will be” (Armstrong, 2001, p. 2). According to Moon (1999, p. 8), “Any sales forecast should be thought of as a best guess about expected levels of customer demand for company's goods or services, during a particular time horizon, given a set of assumptions about the environment”. Understanding ‘what is sales forecasting’ is the first step towards improving of sales forecasting performance, the company's plans and the planning process. Based on lessons learned from 15 years working with hundreds of world famous companies, Moon et al. (1998), proposed the seven keys to manage sales forecasting effectively. Accordingly sales forecasting is a process, not forecasting methods.

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