Heinrich Georg Maschinenfabrik strengthens digital service
New organizational structure puts stronger emphasis on service activities, providing customers additional opportunities for productivity improvement.
Kreuztal, Germany, September 2, 2021 Georg has pooled all its service-related activities, which had so far been spread over three different divisions, within the new “Service” business unit. With this step, the German-based mechanical engineering specialists and experts in process optimization have augmented the role of services within their product portfolio. At Georg, service is now equally matched with the machines and systems the company designs and supplies to customers worldwide. A powerful service team and the use of latest digital tools will enable Georg to provide its customers with an enhanced and more efficient range of services.
During the last few years, Georg has almost completely digitalized its service activities in the Transformer Plants division by making effective use of its “Georg connectedservice” platform and other online communication channels. The company has now taken the next logical step in this direction: all the customer service staff from the three divisions - Finishing Lines, Machine Tools and Transformer Lines – have been pooled into the newly formed “Service” business unit.
This team, enhanced by additional specialist personnel, uses a common set of digital tools for all three divisions. The resulting synergies achieve a significant reduction in response times to customer requests and will further enhance the availability and profitability of the customers’ machines and plants over their entire lifecycle.
Axel Sturm, Head of the new Service business unit, expects major benefits for his customers: “In our newly set-up team, service staff from our three product areas work together under one roof. For our customers, this provides the advantage that we can react to their service requests much faster and more flexibly, as we can choose from a greater pool of experienced service technicians, engineers, and skilled maintenance staff. The new structure also makes internal cooperation and communication with our design and procurement departments easier. The benefit for our customers: their machines and systems will be back on stream much faster after maintenance or repair service.”
For several years, Georg has increased their use of digital communication channels to perform maintenance and other service activities. During the last two years, the Transformer Lines division handled approximately 80 % of all software- and electronics-related service requests from the Georg headquarters in Kreuztal.
Georg has already commissioned various newly installed machines and even performed complex upgrades remotely from Kreuztal. At Hulamin in South Africa, for example, the Processing Lines division upgraded an existing cut-to-length line to a combined cut-to-length and recoiling line – without having any Georg personnel present at the customer’s location. Also, the Machine Tools division performed the pre-commissioning operations of five roll-grinding machines at the Zhanjiang facilities of Baowu Steel Group Corp., Ltd. in the Chinese province of Guangdong from Kreuztal also completely via online channels.
In terms of technology, the core element of Georg’s Life Cycle Management is the GEORG connectedservice platform. All service activities from diagnosis and support to order management, including invoicing, can be performed online via this suite of digital tools. Even work on the equipment may be performed via GEORG connectedservice.
For Mark Georg, Managing Director of Georg, digital tools provide a great number of benefits: “When a job has to be done at one of our customers’ facilities, this does not necessarily mean that we have to send our staff there. Thanks to our GEORG connectedservice, we have been able to avoid numerous on-site assignments – and, consequently, many air travels. We are currently adding more tools to our digital platform to further enhance our service capabilities, for example, by providing our customers access to a digital spare parts catalogue and the option to use our proactive maintenance service. Even today, it is quite common that we receive autonomously generated notices from machines when maintenance is due or a spare part is needed. All the customer has to do is to confirm this by an online created service request.
Axel Strum and his team plan to further broaden and enhance the portfolio of the new Service business unit: “We will accompany our customers during the entire lifecycle of their plants with a wide range of services so that they will get the most out of their investment – through higher machine dependability, higher productivity and higher profitability. We will also extend our range of web-based training courses and consulting services, and our capacities for remotely performed plant modifications and upgrades.”