Section 3: Forecasting for NUMs

Forecasting for a supply of any method is based on assumptions, but NUMs are especially dependent on assumptions. This section of the guide explains a suggested framework for thinking through and building out the assumptions required for a more accurate prediction of demand for NUMs. Remember that no forecast is perfect, and a 25% forecast error rate is a reasonable standard of accuracy.

The recommended process for any NUM forecasting activity includes the following five steps (click on each step for further explanation). Each step is explained in detail with recommendations throughout this section (USAID | DELIVER PROJECT 2008).[1]

STEP 1: Gather data from secondary sources that can support assumption building and identify the limitations of the data.

STEP 2: Build out assumptions based on a contextual framework of factors that will potentially influence the uptake of NUMs.

STEP 3: Host an assumption-building workshop with key stakeholders.

STEP 4: Forecast! And, run a “reality check” on the quantification and distribution strategy.

STEP 5: Develop and implement a monitoring plan.

[1] Note that the recommended steps for quantification exercises when one has historical data is available is detailed in this reference.