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To enable fast-track information sharing, Sandvik is launching a new self-service online platform that will allow customers to access information regarding round bar, hollow bar, pipe, flanges and fittings. The new platform, an industry first among steel producers, provides customers with a personalized dashboard overview and includes a number of benefits:
• 24/7 access to information
• Current and incoming stock levels
• Customized price agreement handling
• Current orders and history
• Credit information
• Documentation and certificates
“The whole purpose of E-Track is to cut through the complexity and make it easier and more convenient for customers to go online from any web-enabled device, 24/7, and access the information,” says Johan Josefsson, Sales and Marketing Manager, Long and Piping Products. “This doesn’t replace the human aspect of sales and service, which are still available and greatly valued by our customers, but it adds a helpful new digital channel for those who want it.”
Sandvik sees the service as an industry first among steel manufacturers. Until now, the retail sector has been the main driver in adopting online sales and e-commerce, with industrial manufacturers often lagging behind. According to Josefsson, this is understandable given the complexities of the steel industry and the relatively conservative nature of the business.
“Clearly, delivering a few tons of stainless-steel tubing in huge wooden crates or reels is not the same as shipping T-shirts or ordering and tracking pizza deliveries,” says Josefsson. “But the benefits of digitalization open exciting new possibilities in our industry, too, and we’re intent on leading this digital transformation.”
The initial scope of E-Track will be limited to customers based in Europe, with a few exceptions. The focus is on standard stock items that are often reordered on a regular basis. These include solid round bar, hollow bar, seamless pipe (both Sandvik produced and others), welded pipes (non-Sandvik produced), fittings and flanges.
“Basically, we wanted to take the customer experience to the next level and allow customers to access instant information about our products and their orders, which are usually enquired through our sales team,” says Kishore Narumanchi, Sandvik Project Manager for E-Track. “Both the sales teams and our customers want to reduce the hassle of additional time-consuming steps and it frees them up to concentrate on more qualified tasks. Distributors and customers will also still be given their own special price lists that can only be viewed by them.”
E-Track can be accessed 24/7 on any device, anywhere and at anytime. “At the end of the day, I still believe that people buy from their sales people in our business and the digital option is only there to compliment and support. The new online platform is simply another way for us to move closer to our customers and it reflects the digitalization that is transforming our global economy. We want to be available 24/7 on any device, anywhere and anytime – that’s the modern world we are living in,” concludes Johan Josefsson.
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