The Würth Group is a leading European distributor of mounters and fasteners. With more than 3 million customers, and 400 subsidiaries in 84 countries, the company sought to streamline order processing and fulfillment and gain visibility into its global operations. The company adopted a two-tier model for its ERP systems, deploying Microsoft Dynamics AX to its subsidiaries and maintaining a legacy SAP deployment at its corporate offices. The Würth Phoenix Group, the Würth Group’s IT team, developed WÜRTHPHOENIX Trade+, a template for Microsoft Dynamics AX, which helps deploy the solution to new businesses, ensures consistent application of business rules, and enables rapid implementation of industry-specific functionality. As a result, the Würth Group subsidiaries have reduced order-processing workload by 50 percent while providing the organization with greater visibility into operations.
||With Microsoft Dynamics AX, we can integrate new businesses into the Group practically at the touch of a button. Industry-specific characteristics can be easily implemented.
||Bernd Herrmann, Managing Director, Würth Group
The Würth Group, a family business based in Künzelsau, Baden-Württemberg, is the world leader in mounters and fasteners, supplying screws, dowels, tools, and furniture and construction fittings to consumers and manufacturers. With more than 3 million customers, in 2008, the company achieved sales of €8.82 billion. “Competence, customer proximity, and quality are the foundation of our success,” says Bernd Herrmann, Managing Director of the Würth Group.
The high volume of orders creates challenges for the Würth Group’s IT resources; the many invoices and packing slips are complex because of their many destinations and, yet, have a relatively low order value. Diverse international customer and supplier relationships, different laws, and languages and cultures all result in additional requirements.
In addition, the Würth Group is represented by 400 subsidiaries in 84 countries, so international expansion demands a flexible IT approach. As the Group grows, an internal IT team is tasked with quickly providing newly acquired businesses with industry-specific solutions and integrating them into existing systems.Solution
The Würth Group relies on a diverse but complementary technology portfolio. For enterprise resource planning (ERP), the company has deployed both SAP and Microsoft Dynamics AX in a two-tier implementation, with Microsoft Dynamics AX as the solution in use at its subsidiaries and branch offices. To support this model, and to quickly integrate new business as they come online, the Group relies on the services of the Würth Phoenix Group. The Würth Phoenix Group functions as a competence center for the design and operation of Microsoft Dynamics AX. Hubert Kofler, CEO of the Würth Phoenix Group explains, “Due to strong growth in recent years, there are numerous company associations within the Würth Group. With Microsoft Dynamics AX, we are able to map the decentralized structures, too.”
To streamline deployment of Microsoft Dynamics AX at the independent companies, the IT service provider aggregated company-specific business requirements into “WÜRTHPHOENIX Trade+,” a fully integrated industry solution for Microsoft Dynamics AX. The software deepens the ERP system in all areas of inventory control and provides additional functions for business intelligence and reporting.
The high degree of standardization of this complete solution is of great benefit to the Würth Group in setting up new companies. “Trade+ and Microsoft Dynamics AX offer key advantages for our international orientation and for enhancing the joint character within the group. We can activate new companies practically at the touch of a button, and industry specifics can be easily implemented,” Herrmann points out.
To date, Microsoft Dynamics AX and Trade+ have been deployed successfully at more than 65 companies in more than 30 countries worldwide. For example, the Normfest Group, an automotive supplier, implemented Microsoft Dynamics AX to coordinate workflow organization in support of rapid growth. “It’s only by using uniform processes that we’re able to optimize our business and fully exploit synergies,” explains Detlef Zemke, IT Manager at Normfest. Microsoft Dynamics AX and Trade+ helped the company execute on its growth strategy while ensuring consistent, transparent processes. “Würth Phoenix brought the necessary international experience and sector knowledge to the table and tailored Microsoft Dynamics AX exactly to our needs,” says Windrich Bernhard, CEO of Normfest GmbH.Benefits
With Trade+ and Microsoft Dynamics AX, the Würth Group has an ERP system that matches the international orientation and character of a corporate group with many organizational units. Multisite capabilities provide corporate managers with real-time access to the entire database, while at the numerous subsidiaries, company-specific and industry-specific requirements are rapidly implemented.
In addition, subsidiaries realize the increased efficiencies of a world-class ERP solution. “Thanks to Microsoft Dynamics AX, we have been able to fully implement our ideas. Our replenishment process has become leaner. For example, we have been able to reduce the workload on orders by 50 percent,” confirms Zemke.
Keywords: Wuerth Group, Wurth Group, Würth Gruppe, Würth Group