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a) Short-Term Planning
For short-term forecasting the following process is adopted. Within a few minutes a good representation of the capacity constraints and abilities can be ascertained:
download ‘live’ network data from NMS; add additional ‘in progress’/short-term equipment build if desired — this could be any new hardware additions that will be installed in the network during the length of the forecast routing period;
route customer circuits in order-book/short-term forecasts — this can be achieved in two ways: o the first facility is designed to quickly route a handful of circuits only, with the user identifying the end-points of a forecasted circuit and the tool selecting the best route between them (this route can be overridden manually by the user if desired); o if there are a large number of circuits forecast, the user can use the second option which is to create a traffic matrix (in a simple text file) specifying various circuit details that can be routed in bulk across the network; highlight any additional card build to satisfy short-term forecast, as in many cases the forecast traffic would exceed the capabilities of the current network, hence necessitating new network build — Utilisator can be instructed to either add the new equipment required to support the demand or simply note that a particular demand cannot be routed.
At the end of this process, the planning team is able to decide on the most cost-efficient network build programme based on its experience of forecast demands and from priorities and objectives. It will be able to report to the investment/financial departments either the cost associated with meeting expected demands or the potential revenue lost should such investment not be forthcoming.
b) Medium-Term Planning
Short-term planning addresses the immediate and pressing customer orders and highlights areas where new cards would be required in existing...