January 26, 2024

Toolio Product Updates: January 26, 2024

Toolio Product Updates - January 26th, 2024

Authors

Begum Burgutoglu
Sr. Product Manager
Peter Leith
VP of Product
Jay Tian
Product & Data

Table of Contents

Introduction

Happy new year, we are excited to update you on some of the recent changes and additions we have made to the Toolio platform and for what we have coming in 2024. There was a lot of new functionality released in 2023 and we intend to continue releasing great features this year, if we distill those features into themes, we are focusing on

  • Stability and Performance - having released so many new features last year, we will be taking the time to ensure they are able to be used as efficiently and effectively as possible
  • Advanced Modeling - A.I. and Machine Learning are incredibly important to Toolio and as we roll out more functionality we are taking time to ensure the end result is understandable and not a black box to our users.
  • User Personalization - As we bring on more, and larger customers, Toolio will be spending more time on defining specific user experiences in the solution from dashboards to granular user rights.
  • Additional Modules - while we intend to focus a lot on existing functionality, we also plan to release our Material Resource Planning module as well as a Markdown Planning module.

New Assortment Plan (AP) 

As some of you may already know, Toolio spent significant time in 2023 to work on our new Assortment Planning module. We believe that assortment planning is the key to effectively managing core and seasonal products and the new module ties together concepts of the current Assortment Planning and Item Planning modules but adds significant support for modeling new products, clustering locations and managing the life of products more effectively. Key Benefits include:

  • Holistic view of core and seasonal products with item plans being produced for all products from launch through phase out and end of life providing a view of the assortment in any given week in the future.
  • Better handling of seasonality flowing products from one season to the next or phasing them out strategically.
  • Ability to define assortments by cluster including automated clustering which defines clusters based on multiple attributes such as performance and space.
  • Rationalization framework which uses productivity calculations and budgets to recommend the ideal width and depth of the assortment offering.
  • Extensive planning of placeholder products until such time as the centralized style bank of new and existing products can be adopted into the assortment.
  • Automatic re-trend in season provides item plan forecasts based on the latest performance to plan within the clusters
  • Slice and dice of the entire assortment at any point in the future or past with the ability to compare back to Merchandise Plans at a level of commonality between the two.

We are currently ironing out the new assortment planning with a number of customers and will be migrating customers throughout the year. Please reach out to your CSM for more detail.

Promotional Causals

Planning for promotions is an important part of any retailers needs and the new promotional causals module allows for the centralized planning of future promotions with the ability to forecast the impact in Item Planning, Allocations and the New Assortment Planning solution.

Users can create multiple promotional causals and link them to specific products, locations and timeframes covering multiple weeks.

Reconcile via Daily Plan in Merchandise Plan

In Merchandise Plan, you can now reconcile your weekly plans to Gregorian level plans via Daily Plan without the hassle to do two-step reconciliation.

To do so, go to Reconcile under Scenario menu, and you’ll be prompted with a modal. Here select your source and targetplans which have different configurations i.e week vs Gregorian. Then, another line for configuration will be shown- Reconcile via Daily Plan with a selection of its related scenario. You can reconcile sales and receipts metrics or any of those. Please note that Day level plans have sales metrics only. Once you click on reconcile, this task will run asynchronously and once it is completed, you’ll be able to see the status on the task manager.

New Export Destinations

You can now export Merchandise Plans and Item Plans to Google Cloud Storage and Microsoft Azure! You are able to configure an automated export schedule to your liking, as well as specify the scenarios and plan years you’d like to export.

These export paths make it easy for your team to analyze and distribute the plans you’ve built in Toolio externally. You can automate the exported plans from GCS and Azure to feed into your Google BigQuery instance, or utilize Azure Logic Apps to connect the data with another system or destination.

Please read more about exports to Google Cloud Storage, Microsoft Azure, and BigQuery below:

Dependent Demand

Toolio now allows you to generate receipts while accounting for dependent demand! Dependent demand refers to the additional demand placed on one SKU, which is derived from the demand for a different SKU. This concept involves transferring or 'pulling' demand from one SKU to another when calculating expected receipts. A common use case for this would be if you sell blank items (i.e plain t shirts, blank notebooks) while also selling printed/embroidered products (i.e. t shirts with printed designs, custom logos on notebooks) which are created from the blanks.

To utilize this feature in Toolio, you’ll need to first import your Dependent Demand relationships at the SKU level. You’ll just need to define the Child SKU, Parent SKU (Blank item), the ratio (how many parents are required per child) and the estimated lead time for each SKU (in days).

Once configured, Toolio will automatically account for your Dependent Demand relationships when generating Receipts in Item Plan, which will be reflected under the Demand Units Plan metric.

Be sure to check out our Roadmap for other planned features and updates to Toolio. Is there a feature you think would be a great addition? Let us know here!

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