Logo Element - Dr. Kraus & Partner

Case Study on Innovation

Innovation

The country needs new products. But where on earth do we get them from?

THE MARKETS ARE SATURATED AND GROWTH IS STAGNANT

SITUATION:

According to the management, Kraus GmbH has positioned itself well in the European shovels market. The associated aluminum business has been expanded since the company was founded and is strongly represented in the market. Sales are seasonal and capacity frees up during the summer months.

There is a need to enter new markets with additional products. Since the shovels market is considered a niche market, innovative product development is necessary. Negotiations with an exporter based in China is one of the first steps towards entering new markets and implementing growth.

The current focus is on the re-positioning of the company in the market, the development of technical product innovations and the associated strategic reorientation of Kraus GmbH. To promote innovations, an "Idea Shower" has already been initiated internally for with engineers, purchasing representatives, sales representatives and the management.

WE HAVE TO DO SOMETHING NOW TO MAKE SURE THAT WE CAN STILL TAKE ADVANTAGE TOMORROW

CHALLENGE:

  • Sales figures of previous cash cows are stagnant.
  • The markets for blades are saturated and customers are calling for innovations.
  • Production utilization is stagnating and has been declining in the past six months.
  • The suggestion box in the company is hardly used or no genuine innovation emerges.
  • The willingness of the employees to innovate is not high enough and the situation is very difficult.

PLAYING WITH IDEAS - AND IMPLEMENTING THEM!

SOLUTION:

Innovation is not a singular phenomenon. Several fields of competence are being deployed here:


In order to develop technical innovations, we use creative workshop formats with targeted moderation and follow-ups. From our experience, it is essential for the sustainable success of innovations and continuous improvement that the strategic direction of the company is also considered. Ultimately, the idea of "innovation" is anchored by appropriate measures in the corporate culture: In addition to technical innovation, you will create a working environment in which you can continue to analyze potential markets and determine entry by means of promising future products.
Initial steps for new product ideas:
  • The status quo analysis:
    We can get an idea of the current situation of the company by means of target-oriented one-on-one discussions and getting to know the production halls. Now we know the current situation.
     
  • Out-of-the-box-thinking: 
    with the contradiction-oriented innovation strategy. A day of developing, distilling and thinking about new ideas. At the end of the day, we will have developed a large number of concrete product ideas through a structured process.
     
  • Implementation planning:
    On this day it becomes very detailed. Together, we will decide on three product ideas and work out a plan for next year. In addition to the innovations, the company will have also developed a road map for the implementation of these innovations.

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