Windmöller & Hölscher KG streamlines business processes

Increasing staff productivity with integrated enterprise content management and automated workflows

Published on 17-Oct-2013

"The time savings that the IBM and GIS solution offers lead to a very high level of user acceptance. Some processes that used to take one or two days can now be completed the same day because we can find and process the relevant information much more quickly." - Annette Freude, Project Manager and Division Manager IT Service Management at Windmöller & Hölscher KG

Customer:
Windmöller & Hölscher KG

Industry:
Industrial Products

Deployment country:
Germany

Solution:
Enterprise Content Management, Information Integration

IBM Business Partner:
GIS Gesellschaft für InformationsSysteme AG

Overview

Windmöller & Hölscher KG, headquartered in Lengerich, Germany, is a leading packaging equipment manufacturer with more than 5,000 customers in 130 countries worldwide. Employing around 2,200 people in 16 branches, the growing company achieves a turnover of €580 million by selling innovative machines for extrusion, printing and conversion within the W&H Group.

Business need:
Windmöller & Hölscher KG wanted to find a better way to manage documents within its core business processes. The company also aimed at simplifying compliance management for its digital records.

Solution:
Windmöller & Hölscher KG and IBM® Business Partner GIS Gesellschaft für InformationsSysteme AG implemented an enterprise content management solution that integrates with the company’s global SAP ERP application.

Benefits:
Automates processing of delivery receipts. Integrates documents seamlessly into ERP workflows, speeding up routine tasks with quick access to relevant documents. Facilitates compliance.

Case Study

To read a German version of this case study, please click here

Windmöller & Hölscher KG, headquartered in Lengerich, Germany, is a leading packaging equipment manufacturer with more than 5,000 customers in 130 countries worldwide. Employing around 2,200 people in 16 branches, the growing company achieves a turnover of €580 million by selling innovative machines for extrusion, printing and conversion within the W&H Group.

To maintain its competitive edge with high-quality products and comprehensive service, Windmöller & Hölscher KG wanted to improve its business processes – especially the processes that depend on the management of paperwork such as delivery receipts, invoices, engineers’ reports and other documentation. The company decided to optimize document workflows to accelerate routine activities in all departments.

With demanding global customers, compliance has always been an important topic for Windmöller & Hölscher KG. To keep up with expanding compliance requirements, the company aimed at simplifying compliance management of its digital records.

Deploying integrated document management
Windmöller & Hölscher KG analyzed its existing document management solution and identified significant shortcomings that slowed down common workflows. For example, its process for handling delivery receipts was cumbersome: it was difficult to find a specific delivery receipt because they were not scanned and filed individually. Staff also had to change between different applications to find all the documents related to a specific order. This caused delays and interrupted routine order management workflows.

To increase staff productivity, Windmöller & Hölscher KG engaged with IBM Business Partner GIS Gesellschaft für InformationsSysteme AG. After the team evaluated the company’s requirements, GIS designed and implemented an optimized enterprise content management system based on IBM Content Manager software.

Annette Freude, Project Manager and Division Manager IT Service Management at Windmöller & Hölscher KG, explains, “The new enterprise content management solution from GIS and IBM breaks down the barriers between information and documents stored in different applications. With IBM Content Manager we created a single repository that can be connected to all relevant applications. We embedded the documents directly into our workflows, so that users can access them quickly when required.”

Windmöller & Hölscher KG implemented the content management system as a central hub that connects to different systems via IBM WebSphere® MQ, and provides access to documents through a publisher and subscriber model. To ensure smooth workflows, GIS integrated the document management solution with the company’s global SAP ERP landscape. By deploying the GIS ECM Gateway software, Windmöller & Hölscher KG also connected its IBM Domino® and IBM Notes® collaboration software to the IBM Content Manager solution, enabling easy long-term email archiving.

Annette Freude says, “With our new IBM Content Manager solution, we have improved our invoice verification process considerably. As part of the project, we migrated a huge number of order receipts into SAP ERP, and now we have direct and integrated access to all 900,000 invoices.”

The IBM Content Manager solution supports the full document lifecycle and provides reliable version management. In addition, the solution features automated document classification through technologies such as optical character recognition and barcode identification.

Digital signatures guarantee the authenticity of documents and help to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements. To reduce storage costs, the solution also determines whether a document needs to be archived securely on read-only disks, or if it can be stored on more cost-effective standard disk storage systems.

Improved workflows for better customer service
Using the new solution, Windmöller & Hölscher KG has automated the error-prone and time-consuming manual handling of delivery receipts.

“In the past, we stored delivery receipts somewhere on a shared network drive and had several delivery receipts in a single file,” says Annette Freude. “With IBM Content Manager, we extended this solution and now have every single receipt in our central data store, attached to the relevant order record in SAP ERP. With 2,500 delivery receipts per day, this is an enormous improvement and saves our staff a lot of time and effort.”

Windmöller & Hölscher KG has also optimized its service reports procedure. After completing a service task at a customer site, engineers now save their reports centrally and link them to the relevant orders in SAP ERP. This improves the visibility of the reports and helps sales and product development teams to improve customer service.

Annette Freude remarks, “The time savings that the IBM and GIS solution offers lead to a very high level of user acceptance. Some processes that used to take one or two days can now be completed the same day because we can find and process the relevant information much more quickly.”

Integrated enterprise content management accelerates everyday tasks by providing access to relevant documents directly from within SAP ERP. The seamless integration of different document formats into a central project folder in the SAP ERP application eliminates the need to change between applications to locate documents belonging to a specific customer order. With the integration, all document types are directly embedded into the business process and can be accessed at the touch of a button.

The centralized document storage solution also supports hierarchical storage management and automated data retention policies to optimize storage allocation and reduce costs.

The certified enterprise content management solution ensures compliance with laws and regulations and provides complete traceability of document records. Fine-grained permission management capabilities allow Windmöller & Hölscher KG to grant auditors access to the information they require, improving data security while fulfilling compliance reporting requirements.

“For us, this project was not only about document management, it was about standardization and workflow optimization,” concludes Annette Freude. “The GIS team was very competent throughout this transformation project. Professional and well-structured project management contributed significantly to the success of this implementation.

“With IBM Content Manager, we have a future-proof and flexible enterprise content management solution that is easy to manage and integrates well with our other systems. We will continue to expand the solution, optimizing our business processes more thoroughly and realizing even bigger savings.”

About GIS
GIS Gesellschaft für InformationsSysteme AG has approximately 65 employees across Germany and is headquartered in Hanover. The company is focused on Social Business software, document management, and Social CRM. Its strategy is to establish long-term relationships with customers to enable close and efficient co-operation. With motivated and experienced employees, GIS is an ideal partner for businesses in a wide range of industries.

To learn more about products, services and solutions from GIS Gesellschaft für InformationsSysteme AG, please visit www.gis-ag.com

Products and services used

IBM products and services that were used in this case study.

Hardware:
Power Systems

Software:
Content Manager, IBM Notes, IBM Domino, WebSphere MQ

Legal Information

© Copyright IBM Corporation 2013. IBM Deutschland GmbH, IBM-Allee 1, 71139 Ehningen, Deutschland. ibm.com/de. IBM Österreich, Obere Donaustrasse 95, 1020 Wien. ibm.com/at. IBM Schweiz, Vulkanstrasse 106, 8010 Zürich. ibm.com/ch. Produced in Germany. October 2013. IBM, the IBM logo, ibm.com, Domino, Notes, Power Systems, and WebSphere are trademarks of International Business Machines Corp., registered in many jurisdictions worldwide. Other product and service names might be trademarks of IBM or other companies. A current list of IBM trademarks is available on the web at: www.ibm.com/legal/copytrade.shtml. GIS ECM Gateway is a product of GIS Gesellschaft für InformationsSysteme AG. IBM and GIS Gesellschaft für InformationsSysteme AG are separate companies and each is responsible for its own products. Neither IBM nor GIS Gesellschaft für InformationsSysteme AG makes any warranties, express or implied, concerning the other’s products. This document is current as of the initial date of publication and may be changed by IBM at any time. Not all offerings are available in every country in which IBM operates. The client examples cited are presented for illustrative purposes only. Actual performance results may vary depending on specific configurations and operating conditions. It is the user’s responsibility to evaluate and verify the operation of any other products or programs with IBM products and programs. THE INFORMATION IN THIS DOCUMENT IS PROVIDED “AS IS” WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING WITHOUT ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND ANY WARRANTY OR CONDITION OF NON-INFRINGEMENT. IBM products are warranted according to the terms and conditions of the agreements under which they are provided. The client is responsible for ensuring compliance with laws and regulations applicable to it. IBM does not provide legal advice or represent or warrant that its services or products will ensure that the client is in compliance with any law or regulation.