ARBURG GmbH + Co KG is one of the world's leading manufacturers of high-quality injection moulding machines for plastics processing. The company is represented at 33 locations in 25 countries with its own branches and offers technical service in around 100 countries worldwide. Timely, comprehensive and solution-oriented service plays an important role at ARBURG. With centrally trained technicians, remote service and preventive maintenance, ARBURG ensures that the machines do not come to a standstill at the customer's premises.
Standardization on a field service management system worldwide
In 14 countries with larger subsidiaries, ARBURG service technicians were already using a mobile solution during their on-site assignments. However, since this was not supported by iOS and the supplier of the system was sold, ARBURG looked around in 2015 for a new mobile solution for worldwide introduction or replacement. At the same time, a deployment planning tool was also to be introduced to support the dispatchers in controlling the worldwide deployments. The requirements for the new system included the integration capability in SAP CRM, the parallel use of an iPhone app and a mobile solution for Windows, simple operation, localization in all national languages and map display in the planning software. After an extensive evaluation of various providers and a visit to a reference customer, Arburg decided on the mobile solutions and the planning tool of mobileX.
Rollout Marathon: Three continents with 22 countries
The successful proof-of-concept in spring 2016 gave the go-ahead for the international project, which began in July 2016. Arburg itself integrated the system into the existing SAP CRM service system via the mobileX web service interface. In mid-November, Poland was the first country with mobileX-CrossMIP to go live; the migration to Switzerland took place in December. Italy, Germany, Austria, Denmark, Belgium, the USA, Canada, Mexico, Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Great Britain, Hungary, France, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Taiwan followed in 2017. In 2018 the Arab Emirates, China and Turkey were added. In total, the solutions have been introduced in 22 countries and 270 technicians and 63 dispatchers have been trained. Each country has its own client in order to optimally support the country-specific processes.
More efficient resource planning and order processing through digitization
ARBURG's dispatchers are now planning worldwide commissioning, conversions and repairs in the form of daily and weekly tours for service technicians in mobileX-Dispatch in a much more efficient and forward-looking manner. Initially, they record customer calls in SAP CRM. In mobileX-Dispatch, they then plan the service assignment for the order for the most suitable and available technician. The technician then receives the new order via the service app on his or her iPhone or iPad as well as in the Windows client. On the app, he can quickly and easily update the status of the respective order during the day, obtain information about the details of the order, and use the navigation system to navigate to the job site. The technicians use the mobile solution mobileX-MIP for Field Service on their touch notebook to document the assignments via service reports. They can record all services such as times, material and routes conveniently via the keyboard. The customer then signs the report on the notebook and receives it by e-mail as a PDF file.
Spare parts management is also integrated into the service process. If spare parts are required, the service is linked to a spare parts order. This allows both the dispatcher and the service technician to see at a glance which parts have been ordered and in which delivery status they are. This ensures that the parts are with the customer when the technician needs them on site.
Individual and economical service for worldwide customers
"A rapid introduction of the new Field Service Management solutions in the course of a transnational, end-to-end digitalization of our service processes was very important to us in this project. In addition, the mobileX solutions covered the majority of our standard processes," explains Thomas Mattes, Head of Technical Service at ARBURG GmbH + Co KG. "The advantages for our customers are obvious: even faster service through optimised planning, shorter travel times and direct availability of all order-relevant data and spare parts. This makes our service even more individual and economical - and for all our customers worldwide."
Further rollouts planned
The international rollout of Field Service Management solutions continues. In the meantime, the software has also been introduced in Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and Slovenia, as well as in internal departments that also carry out customer deployments. Currently, 94 dispatchers and 333 technicians in 26 countries use the solutions. Further users will soon follow in Indonesia and Brazil. In addition, Arburg wants to completely digitalize its service processes by switching to electronic forms. The "Dynamic Forms" add-on module for mobileX-MIP for Field Service will soon be introduced for this purpose.
Image source: Arburg
The German engineering company Arburg GmbH + Co KG is a company of the Hehl and Keinath families and is one of the industry leaders in the world with its electric, hybrid and hydraulic injection molding machines, turnkey systems and its industrial additive manufacturing system. With around 2,300 employees in Germany and another 500 worldwide, Arburg serves sales markets for machines with clamping forces from 125 to 6,500 kN.