My Friends at F2010

The F2010 Business Forecasting Conference wrapped up on June 8. Chaired by Tim Rey of Dow Chemical and Jerry Oglesby of SAS, this was another strong event, bringing together 248 forecasters from business, government, and academics, representing 27 states and 11 countries. It was also an opportu… nity for all to hear about the latest work from three of my best forecasting friends Martin Joseph (Rivershill Consulting), Anne Robinson (Cisco), and Sven Crone (Centre for Forecasting, Lancaster University).

I’ve known Martin since serving together on the IBF advisory board, and consider him a kindred spirit. He drew a large turnout for his session “The Application of Process Behavior Charts in Forecasting & Planning” – and I was glad to see it isn’t just him and me against the world in advocating these approaches.

Anne Robinson and Harjit Singh spoke on transforming an operationally focused organization into a customer-centric one, while their Cisco colleagues Andrew Fisher and Trevor Corkery spoke on implementing a statistical forecasting system in a consensus demand planning process. The efforts of Anne and her Customer Value Chain Management group were highlighted last fall in the Gartner case study “Cisco Improves Demand Forecast Accuracy With Advanced Analytics, Domain Expertise and a Consensus Process.”

Sven Crone delivered a lively keynote on “Artificial Neural Networks – the Science Fiction of Forecasting?” Sven has been leading the research assessing neural networks in forecasting, and was recipient a few years back of a SAS / IIF Research Grant. Sven will be delivering this content again at the A2010 analytics conference in Copenhagen, September 2-3.

Ruth Dobson, roaming reporter from SAS Education recorded brief YouTube videos with Martin, Sven, and many other F2010 speakers and attendees, including Business Finance Editor-in-Chief Jack Sweeney. You can find them on the SAS YouTube channel by searching for “SAS F2010”.

Block your calendars for next year’s F2011, in early June in Cary, NC.