Long-term customer relations are a central contributing factor to the success of the Schaeffler Group. That’s why, as part of the corporate strategy, one initiative of the “Agenda 4 plus One” is “Customer Excellence.”
Schaeffler’s aspiration is to continue to be the preferred technology partner for customers. Schaeffler participates in trade fairs, such as the IAA and the Hannover Messe, to understand customers’ needs and give them the chance to personally experience system innovations.
Global Key Account Management
The customer-based Global Key Account Management (GKAM) of the Schaeffler Group works closely with the regional and divisional sales functions of the Automotive OE (Original Equipment), Automotive Aftermarket, and Industrial divisions. It is the task of GKAM to strengthen customer relations worldwide according to uniform principles. For each key customer, the key account team individually brings together the expertise available in the company from industrial and automotive application areas. Company headquarters and regional sales departments, as well as global and local key account managers, work closely together for this. According to the principle “one face to the customer,” each major customer has one contact person who takes care of all their matters. In order to harmonize the collection of market data or benchmarks and take advantage of synergy benefits from the divisions involved, all relevant stakeholders of the strategic process, the Executive Board members, and regional directors of the divisions, as well as sector and product line managers, regularly conduct joint “GKAM strategy alignments.” The goal of the GKAM is to further intensify a cross-functional understanding of the needs of customer relations, ensure individual support, and fulfill customer demands for mutual benefit.
Key Account Management serves as the point of interaction between key customers and Schaeffler. Through active cooperation and the development of common opportunities for success, long-term success will be guaranteed. By developing a strategy for and together with customers, key accounts are intended to make a fundamental contribution to mutual business growth and success.
In order to deepen customer relations and foster solution-oriented interactions, the Schaeffler Group relies on the most recent “Customer Relationship Management (CRM)” solution. Within the framework of its “Customer Excellence” initiative, Schaeffler has laid the foundation for the introduction of the CRM management tool “Salesforce” across all business areas.
New Executive Responsibilities: Automotive Aftermarket
As of January 1, 2018, the business division Automotive Aftermarket will be expanded and established as a third stand-alone division. With the introduction of the new division, the Schaeffler Group will organize its business into the three divisions of Automotive OE, Automotive Aftermarket, and Industrial. This step will make it possible to respond to the demands of the various customer segments more individually.
Surveying Customer Satisfaction
The company verifies the effectiveness of measures to improve customer relations by using different feedback tools. Up to now, these have included the Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) via telephone and online surveys. In 2017, within the scope of the “Customer Excellence” initiative of the “Agenda 4 plus One,” a new approach to the customer satisfaction survey was devised and adopted by the Executive Board of the Schaeffler Group. This new concept includes the compiling of a “net promoter score” (NPS) to measure the probability that a customer would further recommend the Schaeffler Group. The new concept was implemented for the first time in 2018 and will be applied to all divisions and regions of the Schaeffler Group. In order to explore customer satisfaction and the intensity of customer loyalty, the Schaeffler Group tracks which and how many awards for outstanding customer satisfaction and product quality it receives each year from its customers. In the year under review, the Schaeffler Group received 58 awards – eight more than in the previous year. One of these awards was the DMG MORI “Partner Award 2017,” which was bestowed upon the company at the world’s leading metalworking trade fair, the “EMO 2017.” The reason for this award was Schaeffler’s strength in innovation as a contribution to increasing efficiency and process optimization.