Precision and quality are indispensable basic requirements in the area of standard parts. And this does not only apply to the elements supplied, which, for example, serve as control or active elements in stamping and forming technology. The high standard extends to all areas of the company, but especially of course to the product-related communication. In order to achieve maximum consistency and efficiency here, Steinel Normalien AG, an international standard parts supplier and system provider, decided to be both Product information management as well as to organize the creation of the extensive catalogs with the PIM system from egghead. Surprisingly, the implementation and conversion went much more smoothly and faster than expected.
PIM system: product information for over 25,000 products
For almost 100 years the name Steinel has been synonymous with quality. Founded in 1925 as a machine tool factory, the product portfolio has expanded and changed over the decades. In the meantime, Steinel supplies a wide range of standard parts and has developed in the Progressive and Bihler technology developed into a system provider. The medium-sized family company now offers a total of around 25,000 products such as gas pressure springs, tank plates, machine elements and guide elements for mechanical engineering. The volume of the associated product information is correspondingly extensive. The processing of such an amount of product information can no longer be managed manually.
With the introduction of a product information management system (PIM system), the company intended to optimize both the efficiency of data management and data quality and to automate catalog production. Administration and Maintenance of the extensive product information were previously carried out in different systems at Steinel. As a result, this led to redundant data management, in which ensuring consistency was associated with a considerable amount of work. The aim of the new introduction was to overcome this separation, to feed all output channels from the same source and also to make data maintenance consistent and more efficient.
PIM system as a configurable standard solution
In order to achieve these goals, IT managers at Steinel opted for the PIM system from the Bochum-based company eggheads. This solution already included many of the required functionalities as a standard and also opened up sufficient options for adapting the new software to individual company requirements. In addition, user-friendliness and service quality played a decisive role in the selection of the new solution.
“The eggheads PIM system impressed us with its clever and very flexible system, which we found our way around right from the start. There was also competent implementation support and a goal-oriented approach. After a short introduction, we were able to expand the data model ourselves, import and export the data and make minor adjustments to the templates, ”reports Thomas Hutmacher, Head of IT at Steinel Normalien AG and adds: “Even the creation of the publication could be learned very quickly, so that we were able to operate the system completely ourselves shortly after installing the system. What we couldn’t do ourselves, was competently and reliably taken over by eggheads, such as the creation of the templates and the initial implementation in InDesign. ”
In this way, the manufacturer was able to achieve all of the project’s targets within a very short time. “With the implementation of the eggheads Suite we have achieved what we intended: to get an optimal overview of all product data in order to export data quickly and efficiently and to eliminate unnecessary data maintenance. In this way, we are able to transfer our quality standards to our product data, ”Hutmacher continues.
Media-neutral storage and management
The core of the eggheads Suite is media-neutral storage, management and maintenance of all product content, including the clear assignment of image material. It enables automated media production and publication via various channels from a consistent standard system. This is how a main objective of the introduction was implemented. Steinel was able to make the creation of the company catalogs much more efficient and faster through automation. Even catalogs with complex pivot tables can be generated automatically with a layout from the eggheads PIM system.
The data quality could also be increased through the central data management and an optimization of the data maintenance processes. This also includes the central storage and clear assignment of all image data. And the translation processes could also be organized more easily and efficiently by entering three languages.
PIM system: Employee competence enables quick implementation
“Right from the start, the Steinel project was characterized by the excellent technical expertise of the employees,” reports Wolfgang Wichert, Managing Director of eggheads GmbH. “We carried out a seldom seen project with Steinel: Our jointly agreed introductory contingent of service days was not needed because the Steinel team was able to do everything itself very quickly. Such “service killers” are a completely new experience after more than 30 years in the PIM project business. In particular, the high level of initiative of the employees has led to a very efficient project implementation and saved our own project resources. We liked that very much. ”
Setting the course for the future in marketing
With the implementation of the eggheads Suite, STEINEL has not only succeeded in meeting the current requirements. Rather, the company has set the course for a successful future in the field of marketing. Because even if communication and sales channels change in the future, the company is optimally prepared thanks to the new digital and standardized management of all product information and the possibility of displaying it for different media.
For over 30 years the eggheads GmbH Users with customized solutions for Product Information Management (PIM system) and Product Experience Management (PXM). The aim is to optimize the efficiency of product data maintenance. In addition, there is seamless display of all product information in all channels. This ranges from automated print production to online shops and social media campaigns. (sg)
About the author: Cora Rosenkranz is an IT journalist and works for the Wordfinder agency.
Also read: Product information: Always one step ahead of the competition