With over 100 sales locations and more than 800 service technicians around the world and large numbers of products sold every year, the Hörmann Group of Companies has a complex service structure. There are different requirements across the group of the service management tool required, starting with the number of technicians and order pickers to be connected, via the different business models in the local markets to compliance with the legal framework conditions in the individual countries. These were the challenges faced by us as an implementation partner.
“The team at Axians NEO Solutions & Technology GmbH are the absolute industry experts. For us, that is a real asset, because they know how other companies cope with similar challenges. This means the solution we get is always tried and tested in practice,” explains Alexandra Kempe, Project Manager at Hörmann KG VKG, who have been working with us since 2014.
Hörmann is Europe’s leading provider of doors and gates. In more than 40 specialist factories in Europe, North America and Asia, over 6000 employees develop and produce high-quality doors, gates, frames and drives for use in private and commercial properties.
Hörmann technicians around the world work with NEO Mobile Suite
Sales and service have not always been inhouse processes at Hörmann. For years, the manufacturing company outsourced these areas to dealers and subcontractors. But this has changed as service, in particular, has become increasingly important. “For us, service is not only a high-performance division of the company. Service models help us to build in our customer relationships and generate further business,” explains Kempe..
This was why, in 2014, the family company from East Westphalia started looking for a solution based on SAP Customer Service (CS). Today, service technicians in Norway, Great Britain, France, Slovakia and Dubai are working with NEO Mobile Suite (NMS), our digital assistant for field technicians.
How NEO Mobile Suite makes everyday work easier
NMS provides the technicians with all customer, order and system data at a glance and allows them to record feedback directly into the SAP system. Other functions such as producing quotations and the documentation of competitor equipment enables them to tap into further sales potential for the customer.
Completely paperless – independence through digital order-picking
The NMS links to SAP MRS (Multiresource Scheduling), which we also customised to Hörmann’s individual requirements so that it now provides additional functions such as displaying routes and automatically calculating travel times. Consistent processing within an integrated system is particularly interesting for Hörmann as it means an order can be generated directly from a customer message. This is then received by the technicians on their tablets at the scheduling stage and they can also record feedback on a mobile basis.
“In practice, this is reflected when the technicians arrive on site: they have all the information they need for the job. The know exactly who their contact is on site and what product they are dealing with. They can also get the completed job confirmed directly by the customer with a signature. This allows a large degree of independence. “NMS also has checklists which provide massive everyday support when it comes to statutory tests and maintenance.”
“Technicians no longer need to drive to the office in the morning to pick up job paperwork. They can start where they want. That gives them independence.”
Alexandra Kempe, Service Project Manager, Hörmann KG VKG
Farewell to Excel: Service planning is now completely transparent
The schedulers, who work with SAP MRS, are much better off than with the Excel lists they used before, as they have a central, user-friendly technician scheduling system, plans can be changed quickly and travel times are transparent. “All this helps us be ordered and reliable in our work,” reports Kempe.
SAP Service Cloud as efficient planning tool in Poland
As well as using SAP MRS and NEO Mobile Suite, Hörmann is also implementing two further IT strategies for service management in Germany and Poland.
Technician visits in Poland are planned directly using the SAP Service Cloud . “Together with Axians NEO, we started completely from scratch,” the project manager remembers. The organisational challenge lay in moving the four independent branches in Poland onto the same software and standardising processes.
It worked: The SAP Service Cloud is also used as a ticketing system in Poland. The major benefit of this is that technicians can be assigned directly to tickets.
Quick, simple, error-free – complaints process based on C/4
For technician service planning in Germany, the door manufacturer currently still uses planning software which was developed inhouse and is now somewhat dated. But changes are now being made: “The central processing of customer complaints is the first process we have migrated to C/4 in German,” explains Lennard Eichler, Customer Cloud Team Leader at Hörmann KG VKG. He adds that the complete replacement of the inhouse solution is already in the starting blocks.
With the cloud-based complaint management system, the door manufacturer has created a central platform for the first time. “If you sell several thousand garage doors, drives and loading bridges every year, you are going to get complaints. We knew that,” says Eichler. The difference: we now have the facts and figures in black and white and can use this data to derive potential to minimise these complaints. The complaints process is now much shorter, he explains. While every customer enquiry used to involve time-consuming research of information which had already been recorded, it now just takes a look at the system. As a result, Customers get a response quickly and enquiries are processed faster.
“I am always in the loop on the topics we are implementing with Axians and I can give my colleagues internal information, even if I am not actively involved in the project.”
Lennard Eichler, Customer Cloud Team Leader, Hörmann KG VKG
Based on the excellent experience with the previous NMS/MRS project, Hörmann KG VKG opted for us as its implementation partner for the cloud migration.
From the first steps through system development to the roll-out and everything afterwards, we are now providing full support for the C/4 project. “Working with Axians is very, very pleasant. It is well structured, and there is defined communication and a clear point of contact for the different levels,” adds Eichler.
Standard appearance for the customer is key for Hörmann
The aim of the cloud project is to ensure a standard appearance for the customer, from sales through internal service to the service technicians. After the success of the project in Germany, Hörmann wants to roll this standardisation out on an international basis. The team leader explains why the decision was made to go for a cloud solution: “Compared to other countries, we have little or no mobile internet on many sites and commercial estates which are under construction in Germany. As we can now record status reports and feedback, the offline availability of our solution is very important.”
With NEO Mobile Suite: as a digital assistant for field technicians, the SAP Service Cloud for ticket management and service planning in Poland and a central complaint management system based on SAP C/4, Hörmann KG has gradually standardised and modernised its service management system over the past few years.
The service processes, which were previously based on Outlook and Excel, making them complicated and non-transparent, are now fully mapped on a digital basis. The door manufacturer can benefit from a central overview of all important information relating to complaints and order-picking. It also gives greater independence to technicians in their everyday work and improves customer satisfaction on a sustainable basis thanks to short, conclusive service processes.
As a holistic partner for the various service management tools, we will also provide support on the planned international roll-out of the end-to-end service processes.
Trade show app: Process qualified contacts promptly
As one of the largest exhibitors at the BAU trade show in Munich, Hörmann has been collecting customer contacts on paper for years. This meant time-consuming sorting, copying and manual distribution of contacts to branches, central areas and potential service-providers.
This is all in the past thanks to a trade show app developed specially for Hörmann based on SAP C/4.
“Today, we can save a massive amount of time on all the follow-up activities,” reports Lennard Eichler, Customer Cloud Team Leader at Hörmann KG VKG. “The office staff have all the important information as soon as the contact is recorded and can start processing it immediately.” This involved setting up a removal mechanism for the potential service-provider, as well as other Hörmann-specific fields. Now, an Excel export is produced from the trade show app at the end of every day of the show which transfers the necessary information on customers, products and prospects. “This means we can send out our information to our customers and prospects quickly after our discussion at the show,” adds Eichler.
This means the trade show app is not only a massive time-saver for the employees of Hörmann KG VKG, it also makes a significant contribution to long-term customer loyalty.