Forecasting is the process of predicting short- and long-term customer demand and the corresponding labor that will be needed to serve those customers. The forecasting algorithm that makes this possible uses historical data to predict sales and the amount of labor required. 

The main drivers of this forecast can vary by industry. For example, retailers will see customer and sales forecasts as more important, while a manufacturer may use a more manual approach, looking at factors such as the number of production lines in operation or the day’s production volume targets. 

Without proper forecasts, scheduling will be inaccurate, which can negatively impact shift coverage and customer service.

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