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Best practice in demand planning includes working with the sales department. Building strong relationships with your sales teams can offer significant advantages in your demand planning process. Salespeople can alert you to key issues, such as customers that are not performing as expected, which can give you a chance to manage forecasts accordingly. Part of the role of demand planners is to look to salespeople to be their allies--to help them reach their goals and provide outstanding service to their customers. At the end of the day, salespeople need to know that demand planners want them to succeed, so they can be confident that the programs they are presenting truly support the customer’s business.