Lead story 02/18
„We create forward-looking customer loyalty programmes with our individual and integrated solutions. This is only possible if the two sides have shared ideas first.”
Rhenus Warehousing Solutions has now been working to handle DMV’s incoming goods and orders since June 2018. “In the light of our high level of growth momentum, Rhenus offers us the greatest possible level of flexibility,” says Lars Diedrichs, the Managing Partner of DMV Diedrichs Markenvertrieb, with a smile on his face. Rhenus prepared the cooperation arrangement in a determined manner for twelve months and operated the logistics site for the full-service distributor, initially at its multi-user warehouse in Hille. The customer was also granted the option of purchasing the property in this special constellation.
Rhenus Warehouse Solutions thought and acted with a company-wide approach from the outset. The Service Center Real Estate became involved for the necessary restructuring work on the warehouse that measures 12,000 square metres, Rhenus CL Services organised the warehouse infrastructure, while Rhenus Media Services provided support with concepts for technically connecting online market places with their call centre unit. Pooling all these skills, combined with experience in the fields of making deliveries to retailers, handling hazardous items and storing them,finally enabled all those involved to reach their goal together.
But where exactly do you start if you want to understand a customer as a whole? “The customer’s requirements are our focal point of interest. It’s necessary to scrutinise them critically with a view to providing solutions, listen carefully to the customer during communications, analyse which potential solutions are paramount and beneficial and not stop questioning your own approach. Clearly defined and target-oriented team work and enthusiasm for the project are absolutely crucial to its success,” says Oliver Loch, International Key Account Manager at Rhenus Air & Ocean Europe, revealing the secrets. “Good account managers will look beyond the immediate task and visualise the complete supply chain. They need to know where the goods, products and raw materials are coming from and where they are going to. Then they can understand the customer’s needs, but also ask questions and develop new solutions,” says his colleague, Axel Mallon, Sales Manager at Rhenus Home Delivery, describing the company’s approach.
An integrated solution often involves several business areas. This is also the case with the logistics concept for the home shopping company, HSE24. The Air & Ocean business unit has been handling the global transport logistics for HSE24 since June last year. This involves, for example, sea freight imports from Asian countries and rail traffic from China, air freight shipments from the USA – and also managing suppliers, providing customs clearance and monitoring the supply chain. It was possible to start working with the Road business unit five months later – and it has been responsible for storing, picking and supplying the markets in Russia and Italy since then.
The customer decides when and how it would like to make its purchases
Launched on TV initially in 1995, HSE24 has developed into an omni-channel retailer during the last 20 years and is present along all the relevant channels – on TV, online, mobile and on social media. HSE24 has around 20,000 product lines in the fashion, jewellery, cosmetics, wellness, household as well as home & living sectors, across the German-speaking world. The Group has business operations in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy and Russia.
One central contact partner for the customer Rhenus has been able to gradually take over more and more activities for HSE24 and believes that there is greater potential for the future – for example, through a comprehensive European sourcing concept. The integrated support for the customer already goes a long way. At peak periods, Rhenus provides assistance to ensure that the delivery of goods at HSE24’s distribution centre in Greven takes place on time.
“For us, integrated customer solutions mean that services from different corporate units at Rhenus are incorporated in an overall concept. This enables us to offer a complete solution from one source,” says Oliver Loch, explaining the situation. Axel Mallon adds, “If we provide integrated solutions, Rhenus customers benefit from only having one contact partner. It simplifies the customers’ logistics operations, because they no longer have to coordinate matters between different service providers and that consumes a lot of time.” There is another factor too. “Customers can expect consistently high quality and operational performance from us, which we can measure appropriately and improve,” Loch promises.
The third generation managing a long-standing company
The DMV Diedrichs Markenvertrieb family business was founded by the grandfather of the current shareholder in 1946. Since 2013, the company has not only operated as a distributor of health and beauty brand products and washing, cleaning and household products in Germany, but in Austria and Switzerland too.
“Only an integrated service provider is capable of looking beyond its part of the supply chain.”
Integrated solutions create trust
Integrated support also creates very close relations with customers. “We’re able to recognise their needs much faster and draw up individual solutions and innovations, for example,” Mallon reports. His colleagues are well aware that customers really value this. “Customers appreciate things very much if we not only provide the services that have been agreed in the contract, but have our eyes open and are looking out for improvement potential too,” says Johannes Rohde. This is why many customers already involve Rhenus in their supply chain planning work nowadays.
“Rhenus is an excellent partner for integrated logistics concepts, because it has global operations with a large number of specialist networks,” says Axel Mallon with conviction. “We have enormous potential, because Rhenus offers an unbelievably high number of logistics solutions in many business units. This enables us to offer a complete supply chain for the most varied product groups.”