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o9 Solutions and Supply Chain Insights Invite Business Manufacturing Leaders to Test Outside-In Supply Chain Planning Processes

Project zebra press release blog
Published: March 16, 2022Reading time: 3 min
o9 Solutions The Digital Brain Platform
o9 SolutionsThe Digital Brain Platform
Published: March 16, 2022

This Open Call to Business Leaders is Part of Project Zebra, an Open-Source Think Tank Driving Supply Chain Improvement

Output From This Initiative Will Culminate as Input to Redefine the Industry-Standard Supply Chain Operations Reference Model (SCOR)

DALLAS, March 16, 2022 – :o9 Solutions, a leading enterprise AI software platform provider for transforming planning and decision-making, and research firm Supply Chain Insights today jointly announced an open call for business manufacturers to participate in pilot testing outside-in supply chain planning concepts. 

Through a reverse RFP process, a panel of business leaders, academics, and o9 leaders will select two companies to participate in the research. 

This open call to businesses builds upon Project Zebra — an open-source think-tank initiative to drive supply chain improvement that began in January 2021 and was initially funded by o9. Project Zebra’s goal is to define, test, and validate the value proposition of an outside-in approach for planning and decision-making. A departure from traditional ways of thinking about supply chain management, outside-in planning requires a process redesign to minimize latency in aligning supply chain response with shifting market demand. Currently, approximately 60 business leaders are participating in Project Zebra’s outside-in planning training — a testament to both the need and potential of this new supply chain management approach.

The results from these two pilots will help redefine the cross-industry global standard for supply chain excellence, the  Supply Chain Operations Reference (SCOR) model from the Association for Supply Chain Management (ASCM). SCOR is the world’s leading supply chain framework — linking business processes, performance metrics, practices and people skills into a unified structure. 

“For two decades, as an industry analyst, I have written about the need for outside-in processes but failed to define them to drive the required shift in the industry,” said Lora Cecere, Founder of Supply Chain Insights. “I am proud to work with o9 to build a safe way for business leaders to test and learn the value of an outside-in approach. I am excited to support this work and celebrate the leadership of o9 to drive this industry open-source initiative.”

“Today’s supply chains are not very good at sensing, so it is difficult for them to respond,” said Igor Rikalo, President & Chief Operating Officer, o9. “The majority of the market, channel, and supplier data is available but is not used to help companies make decisions at the speed required by the business. New planning capabilities exist but cannot be leveraged to their full potential unless business leaders change their business models and planning processes. That’s why we are excited about the potential of Project Zebra and support this open call to companies to help redefine supply chain processes based on this outside-in approach and new forms of analytics.”

“Lora and I have spoken about the necessity of outside-in processes and the differences between inside and outside-in approaches many times in recent years,” said Peter Bolstorff, ASCM Executive Vice President, Corporate Development. “I am now more convinced than ever that Project Zebra will redefine planning and set the bar on how organizations need to relearn how to leverage data to improve the forecast-ability of their plans. ASCM looks forward to supporting the pilots and continued engagement in both process and data standardization.”

To learn more about Project Zebra and download the application form, go to

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About the author

o9 Solutions The Digital Brain Platform

o9 Solutions

The Digital Brain Platform

o9 offers a leading AI-powered Planning, Analytics & Data platform called the Digital Brain that helps companies across industry verticals transform traditionally slow and siloed planning into smart, integrated and intelligent planning and decision making across the core supply chain, commercial and P&L functions. With o9’s Digital Brain platform, companies are able to achieve game-changing improvements in quality of data, ability to detect demand and supply risks and opportunities earlier, forecast demand more accurately, evaluate what-if scenarios in real time, match demand and supply intelligently and drive alignment and collaboration across customers, internal stakeholders and suppliers around the integrated supply chain and commercial plans and decisions. Supported by a global ecosystem of partners, o9’s innovative delivery methodology helps companies achieve quick impact in customer service, inventory levels, resource utilization, as well as ESG and financial KPIs—while enabling a long-term, sustainable transformation of their end-to-end planning and decision-making capabilities.


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