Talking Solutions, Not Technology

There was opportunity to be had in an unsuspecting corner of Kraft Foods Group Inc.: a small export business operation that hadn’t been given the attention it needed to grow, dwarfed by Kraft International in size. The opportunity presented itself following the spin-off of Mondelez (the former Kraft International business) from Kraft.

Post-spin-off, Kraft’s core business was mainly composed of the slower-growing U.S. market, while the remaining export business offered a chance for growth with consistent double-digit growth, despite minimal investment. The message from management was simple: scale the export business dramatically within the next 3-5 years. And since the business is currently communicating with customers with spreadsheets, that’s something that also needs to be fixed, fast!

In Kraft’s export business, the growth strategy began by improving interactions with each customer, making it easier for distributors to order, as well as to learn about the full Kraft export catalogue. “We can’t grow this business unless we (first) address how we communicate and collaborate with customers,” says Anthony Marshall, Senior Project Manager from Kraft. 

Spreadsheet Order System No Longer Appropriate

Marshall and his team quickly identified that their current model for serving customers was not appropriate for a fast-growth business. The ordering process required customers to complete a spreadsheet that listed products and static pricing, and then e-mail it to Kraft for fulfillment. This meant customers who wanted to see full product offerings had to scroll through a spreadsheet. In addition, when we made price updates and new product offerings, customers had to request specific information or wait for the quarterly spreadsheet update to be e-mailed out.  Needless to say, this resulted in weak order accuracy and effectively non-existent upsells.

Next page: SAP Services and Design Thinking: Talking solutions, not technology

Kraft knew there was a need to change quickly and strategically, so they contacted SAP Services to help them find an answer in order to support renewed growth.

The answers emerged from conversations facilitated by SAP Design Thinking – a process that focuses on discussions about ideas rather than technology and products. That’s a big deal when rebuilding a business strategy.

For Kraft, SAP helped key stakeholders imagine what they could have.  ”If you could build anything,” stakeholders were asked, “what would it look like?”  In this instance, the team at Kraft was tasked with discussing how the right tool to deliver export pricing and to support their export customers could look.

“The SAP Services team came in and didn’t try to sell me a particular technology solution,” recalls Marshall. “It was about taking us on a journey from where we were to where we wanted to be. They understood that we want to improve how we do business, but we also want to realize the dream of what we can become in the future.”

Kraft’s Export Business Is Going Mobile

The solution? A mobile pricing and ordering app with higher data quality and accuracy. Once implemented, the app was met with high praise from their customers – because it was faster and easier to use. SAP Services brought technical expertise and an Agile development methodology to the table to enable a transformation for the Kraft Export business.  In addition, this app was based on the SAP mobile platform, which served as the foundation and infrastructure needed to meet the challenges Kraft faced.

Next page: Video: What Kraft achieved by partnering with SAP Services and SAP Design Thinking

What was Kraft able to achieve by partnering with SAP Services and SAP Design Thinking?
Faster mobile app development cycle with agile methodology

  • Fewer changes in project scope, thanks to early involvement of business users
  • Better user acceptance, thanks to a joint design thinking workshop with the business and IT to reimagine processes
  • Stronger customer collaboration with real-time mobile pricing and ordering tools

Kraft’s Story from Kraft’s Customers

Kraft is off to a great start around their goals for growth. Kraft Export just launched their pilot program in early February with select customers. Customers are already excited about the new process and rich experience being offered throughout the ordering process and praising the “Amazon-like” buying experience which includes real time calculations and fast shipments being received. Already, customers can agree that the new process and mobile tool can be summed up in one word: Amazing.

Marshall explains in more detail what happened behind the scenes to get to this “Amazing” point.


Learn more about SAP Services and how SAP Design Thinking can help transform your business for growth and opportunity.

Follow SAP Services on Twitter @SAPServices. Follow Sylvia on Twitter at @SylviaSant.