The forecast engine is just one of the ways of generating a forecast.
Outperform planning gives you freedom to work on any aggregation level that matters for your business in a particular area. Forecasts are generated by analyzing historical sales patters. Outperform takes the predictable trends and determines their influence on the demand history to predict their influence on future sales.
The forecasting engine detects seasonality by using a moving average over the periods, determines their average percentage deviation from the mean over an aggregated period, averages and normalizes this over the entire historic horizon. This is done for various cycle lengths. Seasonality is for a given cycle length is considered to be relevant when the standard percentage deviation exceeds 5%. If so, demand history is adjusted for these deviations.
Applies when the demand is measured in monetary units. Due to inflation, the money value of sales tends to grow more than the actual growth of the business, disturbing the picture. In this case, demand is deflated by converting everything to Net Present Value. This requires a history of inflation as well as a reliable prediction of inflation in the future usually from government sources.
Some products appeal to a particular age or income group. The income per capita and other demographic trends in a region thus influences the demand, beyond the product’s intrinsic growth.