With the Easy Spares Marketplace™, SIEMENS is taking another step toward digitalization
What began with the SIEMENS Rail Mall has become the „Easy Spares Marketplace™“ – powered by Rail Mall.
Siemens Mobility GmbH presented the new marketplace for the first time at the Innotrans international trade show. Read the interview about Innotrans and the project with Michael Bitsch, Head of eBusiness at Siemens Mobility Customer Services and Patrick Ganzmann, Partner at valantic CEC Deutschland GmbH.
The megatrend “digitalization” doesn’t step at the rails. For more than 160 years, Siemens Mobility has been a leading provider of transport solutions, and it continues to enhance its portfolio with innovations. With digitalization, Siemens Mobility enables mobility operators around the world to make their infrastructure intelligent, ensure long-term value increase across the whole life cycle, improve passenger comfort, and guarantee availability. Currently, Siemens Mobility is presenting a large digitalization project: the new Easy Spares Marketplace™.
Can you please explain briefly what this is all about?
The name stands equally for strategy, business model, and platform. Under the motto “shaping connected mobility,” we at Siemens Mobility want to network better with digital innovations, for digitalization is fundamentally changing our industry: it improves utilization of vehicles and infrastructures, optimizes operating processes, and reduces work and costs, in addition to helping guarantee availability and long-term value creation across the whole life cycle.
The Easy Spares Marketplace™ fits into this strategy. We put it on the market in order to supply all the needs of our mobility customers across all systems. “Easy” stands for easy shopping. In addition to the shopping experience, this allows single sourcing. Via the platform, Siemens Mobility integrates other manufacturers and dealers so that the customer can order all relevant parts on one platform. On the one hand, this is easier and faster for the customer; on the other hand Siemens Mobility also offers vendors with no e-commerce capabilities a new, additional digital channel to customers – with all the advantages of a strong brand – and therefore, the opportunity to optimize their sales.
What was the initial inspiration for establishing a B2B marketplace at Siemens Mobility?
Everybody who engages in B2B as we do is also a B2C customer and knows how quick and easy shopping can be. Our main concern was to transfer this experience to B2B. Our premise is that shopping on the platform is so easy that the buyer can identify the spare part in just 10 seconds, complete the order process in 3 minutes, and have the product delivered within 24 hours in the EU. Our approach always is to make things as easy as possible for the customer; this was our goal with the Easy Spares Marketplace™.
The underlying technologies are SAP Hybris Commerce [now SAP Commerce Cloud; editorial note] and Mirakl. Have you bet on the right “horse” with these partners?
We consciously selected technology partners with a good name on the market. Important was especially that the partners have profound knowledge and good references in B2B with the specific challenges – and both SAP and Mirakl have these.
valantic was the implementation partner. What do you especially admire about this cooperation?
We’ve been working with valantic for more than four years. valantic is a partner that has mastered more than just the implementation. Let me put it this way: valantic offers “added value.” I mean that the company’s expertise does not end with the technology. valantic’s consultants have excellent process knowledge and understand the complexity of B2B. In addition, valantic has expertise in design and user experience, which was very valuable in the project. Because the project was not specified completely at the start, we needed a partner who is also familiar with innovative, uncertain, and new terrain. valantic has always reacted quickly to changes and assumed responsibility in an agile project. Only this way could we manage such a complex project in such a short time.
What was your personal highlight of this project?
The agility of the project. For me it was wonderful to see that design and user experience could be developed so quickly and so well. The agile methodology showed me how by being stringent and avoiding many iterations, you can produce a great result.
Thank you for the interview and good luck with the Easy Spares Marketplace™.