I received an unusual letter this month: a California-postmarked, hand-written envelope with a torn-out magazine page stuffed inside. A post-it stuck to the top read: “Try this. It’s really good!” No signature. The article, “How Top Executives Manage to ‘Do it all,’” promoted a newsletter subscription, and discussed the dilemma many of us face: too little time, too much to do. It went on to suggest ways to simplify frenetic schedules in order to enjoy work, and ultimately, life. Seem like a tall order? Well, it is. But the years have provided us with many new tools that can help turn information overload into an organizational utopia.

Most executives have more thoughts running through their heads than any PDA can lasso. So, in this issue we feature two articles that advocate ways to simplify business processes using existing company data.

In this month’s cover story, assistant editor Alex Runner explains how demand planning and sales forecasting (DP&SF) can help distributors keep their fingers on the pulse of customer buying habits — and predict their next move before it happens.

Similarly, the Tech Central article, “Content Cache,” suggests that internal departments can coordinate and synchronize websites, catalogs and other materials by organizing and leveraging the content, or information, they already possess.

Powerful tools are available to help overburdened distributors find order in what seems, at times, like chaos.