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The roll out of an e-commerce platform for an iconic brand like Miele is a major challenge, especially across 50 countries globally. Miele X was established as the global digital sales and marketing hub for Miele, responsible for shaping and driving the digital future for the brand.
We talked to Marco Akdemir, E-commerce Project Manager, working as a freelancer at Miele X, based in Amsterdam about how the team is working to accelerate Miele’s Digital platform roll-outs. What are Miele X’s secrets to success? Before joining Miele X, Marco did a Masters in Marketing Management and worked for a Dutch food wholesaler and a Dutch pharmacy retailer. Here he was responsible with his team for implementation and later optimization of their e-commerce platforms.
Aligning output and expectations
With Miele’s global network, it wasn’t surprising to find differences in the way e-commerce was being delivered. Countries were using different platforms and designs. The new strategy involves bringing alignment, with a new single platform version of the website. Marco explains what was involved. “Our objective is to get all markets onto the new platform with the same look and feel, having the same technology stack, but also giving the markets the possibility to create local content. ‘Standardization with a local touch’ - we want to be efficient in maintenance and support, but enable local markets to connect with their customers using a local tone of voice”.
One of the most important aspects was aligning expectations at the start. “To create a solution which works for all markets, we informed markets upfront about the new functionalities of the future ecommerce platform and how these are maintained. After training and practice, markets now have the knowhow to maintain their store and do ecommerce” Marco explains.
Knowledge management is key
Getting an international roll-out successfully up and running also requires another key ingredient: great collaboration and knowledge management. “The project demands knowledge about processes. We need to make sure that every step is being documented and we try to use as much as possible a standard plan of approach. We defined the deliverables, what needed to be taken into account to give us a clear view of the tasks. As every country is different there are always unforeseen challenges. So we're trying to think ahead, and mitigate the challenges upfront. Of course, as the team get more experience, they get more familiar with the steps that need to be taken, so we become more efficient as well”, Marco explains.
The people make the project
Behind every successful project has to be an aligned team. It’s no different at Miele X. Marco puts a lot of the success down to good teamwork. “One of the critical success factors in the acceleration in our roll-outs is of course the people. Working at Miele X, means working in an international environment. People all over the world joined the team, bringing a great mix of cultures. As a project manager it is great to experience and meet all these cultures. The people make the project. Getting more experienced and doing more roll outs, the team gets more aligned about the common objective, our approach and we are getting ‘X’ done”.
A process of continuous improvement
Miele’s Immer Besser philosophy means continuous improvement is a way of working for everyone at Miele X. This means learning from each stage of a process and carrying that learning into the next phase. We have many more countries to roll out the new platform to, so after each roll out we evaluate, to enable us to improve and do better.
So, what does the future hold?
Marco looks forward to when all the Miele countries are on the new platform. “The more countries we migrate to this platform the more strategic synergies we can realize. Every change we make, will have a growing impact by having more countries benefiting from these improvements. I am looking forward to working with the countries to share the best practice we have in Amsterdam so they’ll be able to take advantage of that expertise and knowledge.”
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What’s Next? You Decide.