Learn from accomplished practitioners, noted business school faculty, and an engaging group of your peers, in 1.5 days of practical professional development.

The Foresight Practitioner Conference is produced jointly by Foresight and North Carolina State University Institute for Advanced Analytics.

Foresight: The International Journal of Applied Forecasting delivers insights from practitioners in the field and takeaways from new research to help business forecasters continue to learn and enhance their performance. It is published by the nonprofit International Institute of Forecasters (IIF), a broadly cross-disciplinary organization including analysts, planners, managers, scholars, and students across business, economics, and statistics, among other related fields. Through its journals and conferences, the IIF seeks to advance and improve the practice of forecasting.
The Institute for Advanced Analytics at North Carolina State University has been preparing data savvy professionals for leadership in a digital world since 2007. Their mission is to produce the world’s finest practitioners of analytics — individuals who have mastered complex methods and tools for large-scale data modeling, who have a passion for solving challenging problems through teamwork, who are guided by intellectual curiosity, honesty and integrity, and who strive to attain the highest level of professionalism through continuous self-improvement.

Recoupling Forecasting with Inventory Control and Supply Planning.

Why focus on the forecasting process?
Research has revealed that too often the forecasting process is decoupled from inventory and supply planning: forecasters have imperfect knowledge of how their forecasts are used and managers have little knowledge about where the forecasts are coming from. The resulting misunderstandings and outright calculation errors are costly and wasteful. Resolving these problems requires better communication among forecasters, planners, and suppliers of the software in use.
Our conference speakers will provide perspectives from their experience and research on how to reintegrate these critical processes, reaping the benefits of lower costs and better service.
Increase your knowledge and cultivate relationships.
Immerse yourself in the real-world experiences and lessons learned from the successful approaches developed by supply chain forecasters, planners, and managers. You’ll hear from and talk with the experts who actually wrote the books on the tools, technologies, and processes we’re using.
Improve your professional outlook.

This short break from your day-to-day professional life may provide you — whether you’re an executive, business leader, supply chain professional, or business forecaster — with a new outlook on your profession and the realization that there are common practices that should be modified and new practices that should be explored.

Register today!                      Program

What can you expect? ‎


Solutions proven in the real world.

You’ll learn from successful practitioners whose insights come from firsthand experience. You’ll benefit from presentations of practical research from top academics. And you’ll learn from experts who’ve actually written the books on the topics at hand.


Practical advice you can use right away.

In just two short days, you’ll return to your organization with a deeper understanding of the methods and practices that succeed in the field. And you’ll be equipped to ferret out and replace the bad habits that are hiding in plain sight.


Learning unbounded by formal sessions.

Registration is limited to 60 to enable you to interact with our expert speakers, and to maximize your opportunities to network with delegates from a wide variety of companies. We build in ample unstructured time for you to discuss your experiences with folks who offer new perspectives on your challenges during breaks, meals, and social events.


Education for your whole dream team.

Whether you’ve got a new hire who needs to get up to speed, a distributed team that could benefit from face-to-face interaction, or a group ramping up on a new initiative, this conference is an ideal opportunity to get everyone on the same page. Nearly half of the attendees of our last conference were part of a team! Teams of 3+ save $100 each!


New insights all year from Foresight.

Readers have likened the journal to a conference in print. If you don’t subscribe yet, your registration includes a one-year subscription to Foresight. Current subscribers save $100 off their registration fee!


Learn in a modern facility.

This event will be held in a state-of-the-art classroom at NC State University. You’ll experience excellent sight lines and sound in the classroom, and high-quality meals and networking events.
Venue & lodging details.

Conference Sessions

Recoupling Forecasting with Inventory Control and Supply Planning

Keynote Address: Recoupling the Forecasting and Inventory Management Processes

Presenter: Aris Syntetos, Professor of Operational Research and Operations Management at Cardiff University, Business School

Demand forecasters often assume that forecasting is an end in itself. Conversely, inventory planners often assume no preceding stages of computation, i.e. that demand and its parameters are known. However, demand must be forecast and demand forecasts are inputs into a stock control model. The performance of the whole system must be judged by the resulting inventory investments and the service levels offered to our customers. In this presentation: (1) I’ll explain the need for improved understanding between forecasters and inventory controllers, (2) Illustrate common problems that arise when these functions are not properly integrated, and (3) Present an assessment of the unnecessary costs that are incurred when these functions are disconnected.

My recommendations go beyond insuring proper technical calculations—although these are critical—- to strive for better communication between demand forecasters and inventory controllers, as well as with suppliers of the software they use.

Strategies for Long Term Demand and Capacity Planning

Presenter: Peter Alle, Principal, Oliver Wight Americas

Capturing a growth opportunity requires deliberate planning on both the demand and capacity side, often for time frames well beyond the scope of traditional S&OP or Integrated Business Planning processes. My talk will l address the challenges of longer term demand and capacity planning.

On the demand side: How the strategic planning process in place can be used to inform demand, How to apply market and competitor insights, Helpful assumptions for growth projections, Evaluation of economic conditions, and Ascertaining variability of future state demand.

On the supply side: Can capacity improvements be achieved through efficiency improvements, six sigma projects? Will the expanded capacity require new production lines? Will the new capacity require a new plant? What role can co-manufacturers play – is there external capacity available? Are inventory builds an option?

The presentation will also discuss capacity to demand ratios as a planning tool.

Global Forecasting Standards for Sales-forecast Integration, S&OP, and Safety Stock Management

Presenter: Ellen Bonnell, Head of Global Statistical Forecasting, Hilti

Hilti is a $4 billion company that sells premier tools and equipment to the construction industry in almost every country on the planet. It is now bringing its statistical forecasting system to a global standard and global forecasting will become the foundation of sales forecast integration, S&OP, and global safety stock management.

In this talk, I’ll share with you the importance to Hilti of and our journey to the global standard: the steps, challenges, software, controls, measurements and successes to date.

Visibility: A Key Ingredient to Inventory Optimization

Presenters: Henry Canitz, Director, Product Marketing & Business Development, Logility Inc and Gian Leocata, Global Inventory Optimization Manager, Sensient Colors, LLC

Part of Sensient Technologies (SXT), Sensient Colors is a leading global manufacturer, providing natural and synthetic color solutions to trusted brands in different market segments such as food and beverage, cosmetic, pharmaceutical, specialty inks and industrial applications. It has customers in more than 150 countries and revenues surpassing $500 million. As customer needs and vendor lead times became more demanding, high inventory and safety stock levels became the standard way to address these complexities. In order to better forecast and optimize inventory, Sensient Colors is working with Logility Voyager Solutions™ to gain visibility across its supply chain network and identify points for improvement, monetize time and engage with customers in a different way.

Commitment, Culture, Communication and Trust: Prerequisites to Effective Demand & Inventory Planning

Presenter: Philip Conlon, Keurig Green Mountain, Senior Director of Demand Planning

More than sophisticated systems and advanced tools are required for a successful journey to a holistic and effective demand and inventory planning environment. Little progress can be made without commitment from executive leadership and without a culture of collaboration, communication, continuous improvement and most of all trust. Change requires a strategy supported by executive leadership, organizational commitment to the process, education, and mentorship. A thorough understanding of the financial benefits of success and implications of failure in this area are needed to keep stakeholders engaged.

In this talk, I’ll describe our journey at Keurig Green Mountain and demonstrate how the cross functional leadership and commitment to the demand and inventory planning process can deliver marked improvement in forecast accuracy, customer service, and and cash flow.

Readiness-Driven Supply Networks: Aligning Inventory to Mission-Based Forecasts for Military Operations

Presenter: Greg Parlier, retired US Army Colonel, Deputy Commander for Transformation at US Army Aviation and Missile Command

The US Department of Defense (DoD) operates the most complex global supply chains in the world. However, effectively integrating production planning, maintenance operations, inventory systems, and distribution policies has been a strategic challenge.

To address persistent supply problems, the US Army established the TASC project: Transform Army Supply Chains. Through TASC, numerous innovations have resulted including Mission-Based Forecasting (MBF). Employing predictive analytics, innovative forecasting methods, and condition-based maintenance (CBM) algorithms, MBF predicts the resource investments required to achieve mission objectives, thereby enabling the resources-to-readiness linkage.

These lessons have direct applicability to the business world. My talk will describe the Mission Based Forecasting initiative, its component systems, and the road we took to bring it from concept to reality. I’ll emphasize the potential for applying MBF to other enterprise endeavors.

A New Approach to Safety Stock and Service Levels

Presenter: Shaun Snapp, Managing Editor of Brightwork Research and Analysis, an independent supply chain planning software analysis and educational site

Although safety stocks and service levels are the most discussed aspects of inventory management, companies struggle to find the right levels at which they should be set. In my experience, the common methods of setting safety stock—even supposedly advanced methods such as dynamic safety stock—do not take adequate consideration of the inventory that is available to be applied, Moreover, companies often make bold proclamations surrounding service level attainment without having good ways of quantitatively determining service levels.

My talk will explain the problems with standard approaches to safety stock and service levels and offer ideas about how to improve determination of these critical levels for inventory management.

Linking Demand Forecasts with Inventory, Capacity, & Financial Plans

Presenter: Bill Tonetti, President and co-founder of Demand Works

Demand forecasts serve as inputs to a wide range of operational and planning decisions. In this talk I’ll examine how forecasts should be used for: (1) Determining safety stocks (2) Planning production/procurement (3) Linking sales with procurement and manufacturing (4) Finite capacity planning, and (5)connecting operational with financial forecasting.

Expert Speakers and Moderators

Click a speaker to read their full bio.

aris syntetos
Aris A. Syntetos, Professor of Operational Research and Operations Management at Cardiff University, Business School

Aris Syntetos is Professor of Operational Research and Operations Management at Cardiff University, Business School, where he also holds the Panalpina Chair in Manufacturing and Logistics. His research is primarily on supply chain forecasting (both statistical and judgemental) and its interface with inventory management and he has advised many companies toward enhancement of their inventory systems. Aris also serves as Director of the International Institute of Forecasters (IIF) and on the Executive Committee of the International Society for Inventories Research (ISIR). He is Co-Editor of the IMA Journal of Management Mathematics (Oxford University Press) and Foresight’s the Supply Chain Forecasting Editor.

pete alle Peter Alle, Principal, Oliver Wight Americas

Peter Alle, a principal with Oliver Wight and formerly Vice President Supply Chain, Oberweis Dairy,  has over 30 years of experience as a supply chain leader, with a focus on Integrated Business Planning. Prior to joining Oliver Wight, Peter led business transformation improvement initiatives including the global implementation of IBP for a multi-national consumer goods/food business. In order to strengthen and complement the foundational elements required for successful integrated business planning, he also led improvements in demand planning, long term supply and capacity planning, manufacturing and distribution operations.

Ellen Bonnell, Head of Global Statistical Forecasting, Hilti

Ellen Bonnell is Head of Global Statistical Forecasting at Hilti. She has 25 years of experience in Forecasting and Supply Chain including roles in Statistical Research at Nielsen, Distribution Systems Manager at Gould and Principal Consultant at TrendSavants.

Henry (Hank) Canitz, Director of Product Marketing and Business Development for Logility Inc.
Henry (Hank) Canitz is Director of Product Marketing and Business Development for Logility Inc, with more than 25 years’ experience in evaluating and implementing supply chain technology at manufacturing, distribution, and retail companies.
Gian Leocata, Global Inventory Optimization Manager, Sensient Colors, LLC

Gian Leocata is the Global Inventory Optimization Manager at Sensient Colors, responsible for coordinating global inventory planning, management and replenishment processes, as well as forecasting, S&OP, and inventory management policies across the market segments within Sensient Colors.

Philip Conlon, Keurig Green Mountain, Senior Director of Demand Planning

Phil Conlon is Keurig Green Mountain, Senior Director of Demand Planning where he leads the supply and demand planning, fulfillment planning, and supply chain system teams. Formerly, he served as Senior Manager – Product Supply Center of Excellence at Kraft Foods Inc. Phil’s experience includes project management of large scale network optimization, portfolio optimization, and inventory management initiatives that raise customer service, optimize inventory, and improve cash flow.

Greg Parlier, retired US Army Colonel

A retired US Army Colonel, Greg served as Deputy Commander for Transformation at US Army Aviation and Missile Command, where he initiated and led the TASC project. He is a West Point graduate with advanced degrees in National Security Studies, Operations Research, and Systems Engineering, and joined the West Point faculty as Assistant Professor of Operations Research. In addition, Greg is Program Chair for the annual International Conferences on OR and Enterprise Systems (ICORES), a fellow of the Inter-University Seminar on Armed Forces and Society, and past president of the Military Applications Society, the oldest subdivision of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS).

Shaun Snapp, Managing Editor of Brightwork Research and Analysis

Shaun Snapp is author of a dozen books on forecasting, inventory optimization, MRP, supply chain management, and supply chain and enterprise software. He is
Managing Editor of Brightwork Research and Analysis, an independent supply chain planning software analysis and educational site. http://www.scmfocus.com

Bill Tonetti, President and co-founder of Demand Works

Bill Tonetti is President and co-founder of Demand Works, a software and services company that focuses on forecasting, demand and inventory planning, and S&OP. Bill has more than two decades of experience in supply-chain operations, consulting, and general management and has served on the Foresight Advisory Board since the magazine’s inception in 2005.

Conference Prices

Super Early Bird

(Through May 31)
SAVE $300!

Early Bird 2

(Jun 1 – Jul 31)
SAVE $200

Early Bird 3

(Aug 1 – Oct 9)
SAVE $100

Standard Price
Foresight subscribers, IIF members,
IAA members & alumni – $100 off
Guest Team (3+ people) – $100 off
Subscriber/Member Team
(3+ people) – $200 off

Register Today!

Pricing Discounts and Policies

Please contact us for assistance to register for any of the following discounts.

Special Discounts

Attendees from FPC 2016 receive a $100 discount.
Special Student rates are also available.

Subscriber and Member Discounts

Subscribers to Foresight, members of the International Institute of Forecasters, and members/alumni of the Institute for Advanced Analytics receive $100 off per registration. This discount may be combined with early registration and group discounts.

Group Discounts

Discounts are available for teams of 3 or more individuals from the same organization who register at the same time. If you’re not sure who’ll be attending, you can register a “placeholder” to secure the discount.

Cancellation Policy

You may cancel your registration and get a refund without penalty if you let us know in writing (email is acceptable) at least ten (10) business days prior to the conference. If you cancel your registration within 10 business days of the conference, you will be charged a $50 processing fee. There is no charge or penalty for a substitution at any time. If you don’t cancel and no one attends in your place, you will receive no refund.


We will continue to post sponsors in the weeks to come. Why not make your organization one of them? Click on “Sponsorship Opportunities” or contact us for more information.

Sponsorship Opportunities       Download the flyer

Contact Us:
Len Tashman, Foresight Editor and
Stacey Hilliard, Foresight Marketing Manager