15.11.2016

Maximum customer benefits

Roto wants “maximum customer benefits” / No individuality without professionalism – and vice versa / 100 Central Europe business area employees / Three case studies from three countries / Germany: differentiation ensured / Austria: image ensured / Switzerland: throughput increased / focus on 2017 trio of topics

Exemplary evidence from practice

Berlin/Leinfelden-Echterdingen – (rp) “Anyone who is dedicated to maximum customer benefits like we are must also be prepared to offer maximum performance at every level.” This motto is taken from Volker Fitschen’s statement during the 11th International Roto Trade Press Day. In mid-November 2016, the Central Europe Window and Door Technology Division manager used a number of different case studies to describe what the resulting “solution competence in practice” specifically means and its particular results for customers. The common denominator: no individuality without professionalism – and vice versa.

The hardware specialist’s Central Europe business area includes Germany, with about 6,700 window and door manufacturers, Austria, without about 450, and Switzerland with about 250. A total of almost exactly 100 employees provide market partners support, was the report from Berlin. Their objective is to “breathe life every day into core customer benefit messages” based on a comprehensive system and service offer. Fitschen selected an obvious motto for his “exemplary evidence from practice”: three countries’ three successful projects’ three key commitments.

“Roto always works” – for example in Germany

New external product portfolio differentiation and internal processes’ optimisation– these were Fenstertechnik brand GmbH’s guiding priorities in its search for a “stable industrial partner with innovative hardware solutions”. In the end, the family-owned, Creuzburg-Ifta, Thuringia company, which manufactures PVC and aluminium windows and doors, with its primary sales channel via material and building element dealers, decided on the “convincing Roto concept”. The logical as well as complex consequence: changeover of the entire window production.

According to Fitschen, the differentiation premises extended to several segments as a consequence of current demand trends. This resulted in specific customer requirements and Roto solutions. Specifically, this related to security, electrification, ease of operation and process optimisation. Overall, the specific customer benefits were reflected in a whole range of positive effects.

The universal “NT” hardware product range and others, with the reverse-action centre lock (security), the magnetic bullet catch and the lever-operated espagnolette (convenience) also ensured the desired differentiation opportunities, just as the concealed electrical window drive-unit “E-Tec Drive”. Other benefits were increased flexibility thanks to the variable changeover between the different hardware levels, time savings thanks to easier hardware installation (“Clip & Fit system”) as well as optimised stockkeeping due to the distinct use of common parts thanks to the “NT” product range. The application of the “Quadro Safe” marketing concept for secure windows also rates a mention. Ultimately, the sales and specialists teams’ customised and intensive support paid off for the ambitious customer.

“Roto is always a good idea ahead” – for example in Austria

For Josko Fenster und Türen GmbH, the issue of “security” was also on the image development agenda, explains the general manager Central Europe. This required both efficient hardware and marketing concepts in equal measure. The Kopfing, Upper Austria based producer of high-quality segment timber, timber/aluminium, composite/aluminium, PVC and PVC/aluminium windows and doors as well as sun screening systems cooperates with exclusive franchise partners in sales, has an export ratio of just under 20% and can already underline its premium quality with four prestigious “red dot design awards”.

The requirements specification was satisfied in multiple respects in the product range. While the four “Quadro Safe” components enabled an additional security level, the changeover to the KSR espagnolettes (tilting vertical) ensures the realisation of a standard hardware concept for all series. This resulted in a significant reduction in the number of components, faster and simpler assembly as well as greater process reliability. The overall switch to the “Line” window handle ensures a coordination of spindle lengths to the respective security levels and profile systems. Specific logistics benefits also resulted from the lower number of handle versions.

Josko and Roto also cooperated on “pioneering work” at the marketing level in Austria. The instrument: the “Quadro Safe” burglary protection campaign’s market-specific and national adaptation. This resulted in the trans-regional and local campaign packages’ development as well as the winning over of more than 80 Josko partners’ cooperation. The doubling of the security window ratio, from 10% to 20% – measured on overall window sales – was thanks primarily to this initiative, believes Fitschen and feels validated by the “extremely positive customer feedback”.

“Roto continues to make production easier” – for example in Switzerland

The task to be resolved at the St. Gallen headquartered swisswindows AG was completely different. The company, focussed on the strategy of “From Switzerland, for Switzerland”, is not just the country’s largest PVC window manufacturer, it also produces PVC/aluminium, timber and timber/aluminium series. The sales organisation consists of an internal sales team and exclusive specialist partners.

The clearly defined project goal: significant increase in timber/aluminium sector throughput based on optimised manufacturing processes. Fitschen described it as a “classic case” for the “Roto Lean” experts. In close coordination with the customer, they implemented modules F (manufacturing in flow) and P (project management and production planning) from the six-part consulting offer. Their activities had the desired effect, as is illustrated by a look at the specific results. The measurable outcomes include reduced work contents at the “critical” “frame press” stations, a permanent increase in quality, better networked workflows, the effective assignment of personnel as well as a higher window output thanks to the two-shift operation, which has now been made possible. “Goals fully achieved” was also the satisfied swisswindows representatives’ report.

Security, sliding systems and convenience

Speaking of “Switzerland”: in his preview of Central Europe ‘s 2017 relevant focus topics , the manager also announced the expansion of the “Quadro Safe” offensive to Switzerland. As is already the case in Austria, the basic campaign concept will remain unchanged, but will naturally be adapted to the country and customer specific requirements. The plan is to commence its implementation at the start of the year.

Security is also a general part of the three actively addressed “trend topics” for 2017. Another area of focus is the “sliding systems” area of competence, with the new “Patio Alversa” and “Komfort” parallel and Tilt&Slide generation. Apart from the “E-Tec Drive”, a special feature is the “Safe C 600” mechanical multi-point locking system. Its new espagnolette makes it even smoother to run and together with the integrated whisper latch ensures a significant improvement in convenience. And the brackets, which cut across all the topics? This goes without saying for Fitschen: “We are committed to maximum customer benefits.”

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