Customer-Centric Digital Transformation with CLM

In the next 40 years, the farmers of the world will have to grow more food than humanity has ever grown in the past thousand years. – Steffen Honold, Digital Product Manager CPQ, Global, AGCO

COVID-19 has accelerated the adoption of digital solutions and the digital transformation of industries across the board. This includes industries that many would not consider high-tech, or where digital solutions could have a significant impact and yet this is what has happened.

In a recent webinar hosted by Configit and Infosys, AGCO provided an insight into how solutions like Configuration Lifecycle Management (CLM), and the configurators that CLM enables, have allowed AGCO to implement a customer-centric digital transformation of their agricultural equipment and solutions business. Entitled, “CPQ as the catalyst for digital transformation,” AGCO used the adoption of CLM for Configure Price Quote (CPQ) systems to manage the customer sales experience across multiple brands while establishing the digital platform for additional product, manufacturing and service improvements and benefits.

Accelerating Digital Transformation in Manufacturing
with Configuration Lifecycle Management (CLM)

Discover how to digitally transform your product configuration process using a CLM approach

Digital Transformation in Agriculture

“In the next 40 years, the farmers of the world will have to grow more food than humanity has ever grown in the past thousand years.” This will require more efficient solutions driven by digital transformation of many aspects of farming as we know it.

The following data provided by McKinsey also shows that farmers are more willing to take this digital journey and embrace digital solutions for purchase decisions.

As the data shows, COVID-19 has increased preferences for digital interactions in an industry which traditionally is heavily based on face-to-face dealer interaction. AGCO has taken note of these changes to transform their interaction with dealers and customers by embracing and enabling more digital solutions.

A Customer-Centric Digital Transformation

The realities of COVID-19 mean that traditional methods of interacting with potential and existing customers cannot be utilized, opening the door for more digital solutions. AGCO has embraced this digital transformation to re-think their interaction with dealers and customers, and to introduce new and innovative approaches that will continue to be relevant long after the pandemic.

Calling their approach, a ‘customer-centric digital transformation, AGCO relies heavily on their CLM-based CPQ solution to deliver personalized and customized information throughout the process, making the CPQ solution and the underlying CLM configurator capabilities an essential part of each step.

The website and virtual showroom need to provide insight into available models and options that are valid and up to date. The CPQ takes this further by enabling potential customers to get a quote online for their preferred configuration and can also be used later in the process for quotes on accessories and upgrades. The eCommerce site enables sales of accessories directly to customers, which are validated to ensure that they are compatible with the chosen product model and variant.

Using CLM to Integrate and Manage Multiple Brands and Channels

AGCO is a company based on the merger of several brands that still maintain their own unique identity. This is reflected in the look and feel of all of the tools presented to potential customers, even though the master data driving these tools and captured in the CLM configurator has been integrated into a common consolidated and structured data model.

This enables AGCO to provide a different look and feel with the same reliable experience based on reliable data. It also enables complementary solutions, such as the customer portal. The customer portal can be customized for each brand and can even include brand items for each dealer. The move to digital solutions and eCommerce can be achieved while also empowering the traditional dealership network to do more.

This includes the offline solution, which recognizes the reality that dealers do not always have Internet connections at the farmers’ remote places, but still need access and change the configuration and other data. The solution embeds this information making it available offline and synchronization with the backend when connectivity is available.

CLM as a Source of Insight

Digital solutions not only provide information to customers, but also provide insight into customer interactions and preferences that can actively be captured for marketing automation and data analytics. While configurators were first introduced as means of providing product configuration information, modern CLM-based configurators provide a broader range of benefits that AGCO has used to the fullest.

Enabling customers to explore all of the product options and information available leads to a more informed purchase decision. Delivering a better customer experience by providing valid options and the ability to personalize and customize product choices. Providing cross-selling of accessories and upgrades that are relevant and valid to the product configurations already specified by the customer.

But, most importantly, they document the entire process, providing valuable insight into how customers interact with the information and choice presented, customer behavior and preferences, and the popularity of specific product configurations and choices. All of this information can be used to improve sales, marketing, operations, service and development of new products.

Expanding the Customer-Centric Digital Transformation

While AGCO introduced CLM into their CPQ solution to digitally transform the customer purchase, sales and service experience, the power of CLM configurators can be extended to improve the efficiency of other parts of the value chain and further improve the customer experience.

CPQ as the Catalyst for Digital Transformation

Watch the full webinar with AGCO & Infosys