TROX is the world market leader in developing, manufacturing and selling ventilation and air conditioning systems, devices, and components. Trading across five continents and with 31 subsidiary companies, TROX has a presence in more than 70 countries. TROX has around 4,000 employees worldwide operating 18 production sites and in 2019, generated revenues of more than €530 million.
Founded in 1951, TROX has built a worldwide reputation for developing solutions tailored to its customers' needs, primarily architects, planners and contractors. TROX believes in maximizing energy efficiency. Simultaneously, its technology minimizes the need for extensive design and construction during the installation of its products and systems. It is an approach that prioritizes sustainability and the well-being of both people and the environment.
Before 2017, TROX used a legacy PIM system that has been withdrawn from the market. From the perspective of those that used the system, it was complex, not user-friendly and lacked flexibility. Despite this, TROX relied on the solution to manage its approximately 600 products, each of which is available in up to two billion variants worldwide. Adding to the complexity, TROX also managed over 79,000 digital assets and localized its product content in 17 languages.
TROX had come to rely on a small team of documentation managers who, using multiple systems, manually handled localization and checked data quality to manage data flows. This approach was inefficient, unreliable, error-prone, time-consuming and costly. There was an ever-present risk of missed deadlines and delayed product launches, which in turn represented a risk to TROX’s bottom line.
These inefficiencies highlighted the need for a more modern, flexible and robust solution. TROX realized that replacing its PIM system offered an opportunity to rethink its approach to product information management.
After deciding to replace its legacy PIM system, TROX early on determined that usability was a key factor when selecting a new technology vendor. TROX pinpointed a need to let multiple users dispersed in subsidiaries worldwide easily access the system and work in parallel.
Additionally, TROX sought a solution that needed to meet these requirements:
- Optimization of technical documentation and other internal processes
- Central source of product data management
- Enrichment of product data and digital assets
- Automatic translation management
- Integrated creation of assets such as product data sheets, price lists, websites, certificates, product configuration, and spare parts management
- Mapping complex table structures
TROX selected Contentserv over an exhaustive nine-month process. The company initially assessed 11 different providers, four of which made it to the final consideration stage.
At first, as the older PIM system was phased out, only a small circle of users based at TROX’s HQ in Germany had access to the new system. However, users and roles were quickly set up to prepare the solution to be accessed globally across the entire enterprise, multiple business units and departments.
With Contentserv, TROX was able to establish a system that manages complex products with diverse configuration options. Digital assets were also integrated and tagged in the system at this time using Contentserv’s flexible DAM component. Furthermore, the solution was configured to produce product data sheets and price lists using Contentserv’s flexible Smart Document functionality.
Another essential part of the implementation encompassed the successful establishment of international workflows for multi-languages to automate the translation processes.
Results that matter
According to Klaus Pochert, Documentation Manager at TROX, close to 400 users can now access accurate product information. In-house processes such as tasks for corrections and data maintenance are now optimized due to automated workflows.
With the implementation of Contentserv, TROX’s operational efficiency has increased enormously. In addition to improved usability and the access of high-quality product data to more users, the elegant translation process with Contentserv has enabled TROX to become more efficient when distributing product information across the wider group and its subsidiaries worldwide. This, in turn, means that TROX can get its products to market more quickly and drive higher revenues.
Looking ahead, the success of Contentserv has attracted the attention of other departments within TROX, all of which are beginning to find ways to use the system. Marketing and Human Resources are making use of Contentserv’s digital asset management (DAM) component. The Sales team uses the system because of its data transformation capabilities, specifically how it works with exchange formats – evidence that an efficient, flexible and user-friendly PIM system wins over its own advocates.
"Today, we can control everything from our German headquarters and across all the departments that use the system such as IT, Product Management and Documentation."
- TROX GmbH, Manager of Documentation