Retrospection of eCatalog Conference 2016 „Marketing meets Engineering“
St. Wendel, 25.04.2016: "Marketing meets Engineering" was this year's theme of the 8th eCatalog conference.
The cooperation partners crossbase, KiM, Plan Software and TraceParts invited to rounds of talks, expert lectures and an exhibition to present solutions around the topics CPQ, client configurator, product communication, BIM and graphically interactive 3D-configuration.
Round of talks
The conference opened with rounds of talks on the preceding day. Plan Software together with the praxis experts Abd-El-Baki, André Müller, Florian Schrödl of ZIEHL-ABEGG SE and Christian Kaub of HYDAC IT moderated the topic "Configuration with Product Design".
Calculation of product properties within the configurator have priority in regard to configuration with product design. Partially very complex formulae as well as iterative solution procedures are employed. As a result not only individual product properties can be determined but also diagrams or 3D-models. For an effective configurator or a client oriented design program to adequately capture the attention of clients, it is important to optimally integrate these in the WEB-presence.
Experts from Ziehl-Abegg focussed in the round of talks on the particular usefulness of the modern design program FANselect which offers clients optimal solutions on the basis of specific operating conditions.
The specific performance characteristics of the application available online, offline and in mobile form were also the subject of discussions: calculations are based on measurement data of the ZIEHL-ABEGG technology centre InVent known for the high-precision measurement data within the air treatment industry. These exact measurement data are paired with a specially developed computing algorithm ensuring a high-precision ventilator selection. The possibility to compare different products in respect of their technical and economic properties thereby optimizing product selection also in view of acquisition costs and total cost of ownership, gives the client added value. In addition, FANselect was world-wide the first selection software for ventilators equipped with a TÜV certificate. FANselect's TÜV certificate covers almost the entire product portfolio available in FANselect.
Christian Kaub of the firm Hydac pointed out a number of interesting and client oriented features of the new solution for the configuration and design of hydraulic filters. This solution prioritizes the client quickly finding exactly the products which are optimal for the employment in his specific case of application. Aspects of optimal client bonding, particularly important here, were convincingly presented: via a client specific login, products the client had preferred in the past, are directly offered. In addition, the client can define his own design relevant parameters and operating materials and permanently include them in his profile.
These performance criteria surely will become more and more important since maximal client satisfaction and customer service excellence are the central elements of unique positioning and sales arguments of successful businesses.
Expert lectures of practioners for practioners
Four lectures titled "From Practioners for Practioners" gave participants insights into established state of the art solutions from the praxis. The following solutions were presented:
- Design and calculation of complex conductor rail systems with SAP connections
(Paul Vahle GmbH & Co. KG)
- 3D CAD visualization for the solution configurator (Phoenix Contact Gmbh & Co. KG)
- A data base for all distribution channels (KTM AG)
- Integration of CAD data into the online shop (REIFF Technische Produkte GmbH)
During recess times an active exchange of experiences took place between attendees and lecturers.
Expert exhibition of partner solutions
Here attendees had the opportunity to watch interesting functions live and enter into conversation with consultants.
Plan Software GmbH presented at their exhibition stand three new highlights:
- The Sales Cockpit for centrally managing projects and offers from easyKAT® in a web-based solution, to access evaluations and to interface with all current ERP and CRM systems;
- The E-business shop for spare parts as enterprise solution, seamlessly integrated in SAP, enabling users to do searches in product hierarchies or processual steps as well as original delivery and order histories;
- New functionalities of the easyKAT® with accelerated set up of associated knowledge and increased efficiency of configuration processes in the CPQ scenario.
The event which had attracted more than 110 participants and was conducted in the relaxed atmosphere of Angel's das hotel am golfplatz was a great success.There was as usual a small fringe event, this time with a magician and balloon artist and the culinary aspect did not fall short of expectations either. The new format of the event facilitated a balanced relationship between exchange of experiences among participants and the introduction of new technologies and solutions by presenting firms. Talks and lectures provided participants with useful information and their feedback was throughout positive.