Versed in Business Planning

Cofounder of NorthFind Partners, Jonathon Karelse is recognized for his extensive experience in demand planning. His expertise earned him a speaking spot at the Best of the Best Sales Operations & Planning (S&OP) conference. The annual event, cosponsored by APICS and the Institute of Business Forecasting and Planning (IBF), brings together professionals to learn from recognized thought leaders, like Jonathon Karelse.

The Best of the Best event provides educational content to empower attendees to implement S&OP within their organizations. Event focus areas include guidance on how to integrate business planning to unite business goals with operations plans and how to maximize demand planning and forecasting in the S&OP process. Attendees can also learn how to employ S&OP during product launches and using S&OP to mitigate risks.

At the Best of the Best, attendees gain insights from the brightest minds and leading practitioners in the S&OP field. Event Speakers have an opportunity to position themselves and their companies in front of an engaged audience, which is highly receptive to their messages.

The eighth annual conference is set to take place June 18-19, 2015, at the Crowne Plaza Chicago O’Hare in Chicago, Illinois.


Jonathon Karelse leverages expertise in forecasting and demand planning to serve as a partner with NorthFind, where he assists global manufacturers and distribution companies with sales and operations planning. Known as a leader in the industry, Jonathon Karelse also contributes to blogs and publications by organizations such as the SAS Institute.

In a recent SAS blog by Michael Gilliland, a product marketing manager for SAS Forecasting software, Jonathon Karelse offered a number of suggestions for forecasting research projects. One of Karelse’s recommendations was to compare a company’s forecasting performance from the previous year to a Naïve model. When commencing a forecasting improvement effort, Gilliland notes that it is essential to determine present performance, and states that the project should investigate if a company’s forecasting process is at least as effective as a simple method, such as a moving average forecast. He also advises professionals not to blinfly compare company performance to industry standards, as they may be irrelevant to particular company’s forecasting improvement.

For another forecasting research project, Karelse suggests generating a “comet chart” that shows how forecast accuracy and volatility are linked. This project results in a visual synopsis of forecasting challenges, which can be used to inspire solutions to decrease the “volatility of demand patterns.”

With expertise in demand planning and forecasting, Jonathon Karelse currently serves as a partner with NorthFind, a sales and operations planning firm that works with global manufacturing companies such as Molex and Meggitt. As a recognized thought leader in the demand-planning industry, Jonathon Karelse’s work has been referenced in numerous industry publications, including the Institute of Business Forecasting and Planning’s Journal of Business Forecasting (JBF).

IBF recently published an article in its Journal of Business Forecasting (JBF) titled Innovations in Business Forecasting, which was authored by Charles W. Chase, Jr. According to the author, some executives find new product forecasts to be a frustrating effort because of limited data availability, inadequate analysis capabilities, the constantly fluctuating marketplace, and the many variables associated with a new product. While a structured analogy method is appropriate for many circumstances, the article notes that it cannot be applied to every new product forecasting project.

The article discusses a new “structured judgment” tactic that works to enhance human judgment by automating historical data processing and integrating statistical analysis. In the article, the author asserts that the best forecasting results are generated by combining structured and unstructured data through “sentiment analysis.”