The Endress+Hauser Group is a leading global supplier of industrial process instrumentation and automation solutions. Endress+Hauser products are used by companies in the process industry to measure, regulate and control substances, such as bulk solids, fluids, gases and vapors. The company group headquartered in Reinach (Basel-Land, Switzerland) was founded in 1953. Today, it counts around 12,000 employees worldwide and generated revenues of over €1.8 billion in 2013. Endress+Hauser works with sales and service companies in 47 countries, operates five production centers at 18 locations in 12 countries as well as maintaining representative offices in many additional countries. Its international presence and customer proximity helps the group to better understand and meet the needs of its customers worldwide in line with the company’s ethos of “serving our customers and learning from them.”
Endress+Hauser launched the “WebCom” project in 2012 to bring greater efficiency and effectiveness to its global communications. Conceived as a strategic project, WebCom aims to tackle the challenges of a medium-sized, while globally operating company and to answer the question of how “Endress+Hauser” can be portrayed as a “genuine global brand on the web” by improving the quality and homogeneity of information in all international communication. WebCom seeks to optimize workload through the automation and standardization of internal communications processes, on one hand, while on the other hand reducing staff training costs and achieving greater acceptance of the webpages among external users through greater consistency of global messages.
The communication activities at Endress+Hauser are not just based on a top-down structure, but to a large extent take place de-centrally in a network. According to Christian J. Geiger, Head of Corporate Marketing Communication at Endress+Hauser, the art of communication here lies in “achieving consistency in the globally applicable messages, while at the same time taking advantage of the flexibility and originality of the local messages.” Instead of having either just a global or local impact, communication with WebCom now becomes “glocal”. “Globally applicable content is now presented uniformly all over the world, whereas regionally generated content can be adapted and republished in another country.” The company endeavors to be perceived as a dependable and trustworthy partner worldwide. The quality and consistency of the data, images and global content are key aspects in digital marketing communication.
In an analysis of its communication, Endress+Hauser established that the presentation of information on various websites, brochures and catalogues contained significant inconsistencies in some cases. In a first step, all communications-relevant information - text, images - was broken down into modules and restructured as information units. In a further step, the various information units were relinked with one another, ensuring globally valid consistency in terms of content for the group company. Christian J. Geiger remarked: “We regard censhare as our central content management platform that we will use to control and steer all of our marketing contents in future!”
In addition to the straightforward creation and structuring of assets, it is above all the wide range of options for classifying information units that makes the censhare system such a high-performance solution for Endress+Hauser. As Christian J. Geiger explained: “The same information in censhare can be presented to website visitors in various contexts on an automated basis thanks to the data logic and assets’ meta data. We therefore only create an item of content once but use it in many different places on the website. This also makes content updates much easier for us.”
In the initial implementation step, censhare was harnessed in re-launching 38 websites in 22 languages. The requirements and results of the project concern the entire content management process, while the print area, mobile applications, output formats and the editorial process for communication on social media will be integrated into censhare in a further stage.
Endress+Hauser has also identified further strategic approaches where the flexibility and scalability of censhare can be deployed. Christian J. Geiger: "Shops, extranets for customers and business partners, web services and topics such as the internet of things and Industry 4.0 are very important to us as a supplier. And it is of course also conceivable that we could develop our various web presences into a platform where Endress+Hauser can communicate integrally and interact with its customers. Here, censhare can play a key role for Endress+Hauser, and I am convinced that together we can take things to the stage where these initial approaches of today will soon become reality."