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Production Planning


One of Australia’s leading manufacturers and suppliers of steel reinforcing used an Excel spreadsheet to plan production of steel reinforcing across all of its Australian production facilities. This spreadsheet solution had been developed and refined over many years and was a critical part of the daily operations of the facilities.

The Excel workbook had become extremely complex with multiple interconnected worksheets, VB code and complex Excel formulas. As well as being at high risk of spreadsheet error, the solution was supported by one or two key managers that weren’t part of the IT team and had other full-time responsibilities. In addition, the company wanted to upgrade to office 365 and legacy systems like this wouldn’t be supported in the new environment.

SES was engaged to replace the spreadsheet and within a couple of weeks had the first working version of the new solution ready for testing.
As well as replacing the existing functionality, enhancements were added that weren’t possible in the spreadsheet solution and gave planners and management better information in a visual format that allowed them to make better, more informed planning decisions.


Replace critical planning system built in Excel over 7 years

  • Remove risk
  • Ensure long term supportability
  • Improve planning process
  • Validate plan accuracy
Before: Excel solution
Before: Excel screenshot
After: SES solution
After: Chameleon screenshot


  • Multiple hidden Excel worksheets
  • Extensive linkages between work sheets via VB Code, Pivot Tables, and complex VLOOKUP formulas
  • Risk of spreadsheet-based errors
  • Supportability issues

Key Outcomes

  • Stable, robust and well supported environment delivered in a few short weeks
  • Planning process reduced from 6 hours down to 2 hours
  • Enhanced, tailor-made, visual planning interface
  • Added extra functionality that is not possible with Excel
  • Enhanced information to make better decisions
  • Consistency across business units

Contact Us

Call us ( +61 1300 737 500) or send us a message to discuss your needs.

We will then organise a free, no-obligation Zoom meeting to look at and discuss your spreadsheet in more detail.