Purchasing optimization project: Interview with Theben AG
Thomas Sprauer, head of purchasing at Theben AG, reports about the joint project with Kloepfel Consulting in an interview.
Who exactly is the Theben AG?
Theben AG is a leading premium supplier of intelligent solutions for energy saving and comfort improvement around buildings. The company was founded in 1921 and was originally a manufacturer of timers.
What was the reason for the project?
The reason for the project was on the one hand the sustainable cost reduction in the area of procurement costs. On the other hand, the identification of methods to simplify the purchasing process, internally as well as externally, was a major motivation for the project.
How would you describe the operating principles of the Kloepfel project team?
Very independent, intensive and transparent.
While the team was on site, the work was very intensive, of course in a positive way. We were free to decide whether we wanted to participate in the negotiations and discussions or not. Of course, we wanted to be involved in the project, first because we wanted to learn something and second because we wanted to motivate the suppliers.
We are talking about being temporary colleagues in the projects. How was your feeling?
Yes, that’s exactly how it was. Two external employees from Kloepfel were here on site together with the purchasing department in an office. This was a great advantage because we could discuss many topics in the short process. Our time together naturally resulted in a very homogeneous team, which had a very positive effect on the joint negotiations.
What were the biggest challenges within the project?
Achieving our goals within the scheduled timeframe of 6 months and motivating our suppliers with regard to the project.
We do not only have large suppliers with group structures, but also very small owner-managed suppliers. It quickly became apparent that an intensive and individually adapted communication effort was required in order to involve and inspire all partners in the project. In the end, we are very satisfied with the successful communication between the Kloepfel team and our strategic partners.
Was the project goal achieved?
The project goal was even exceeded and we are very satisfied with the total result.
To what extent does the optimization have a lasting effect on your day-to-day business?
We benefit from the fact that the Kloepfel team enlarged our purchasing team in such a way that we had more time to concentrate on other entrepreneurial objectives and were nevertheless able to reduce purchase prices sustainably through the commitment of Kloepfel.
What is your conclusion after the end of the project?
Positive. Overall, the project had lasting effects for Theben AG. The cooperation with Kloepfel was consistently positive and the purchasing department of Theben also enjoyed working together with the two colleagues on a temporary basis.
Would you recommend Kloepfel?
Yes, of course. Kloepfel has convinced us with a qualitative, transparent and cooperative approach and we are happy to pass this on to our external partners.
Thank you very much for the interview!
Further information on Theben AG can be found at:
- Start KW41 / 2018
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