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The new Head of Service at DORNIER Michael Stötzel about modern customer offers of a traditional machinery manufacturer


Mr. Stötzel, about 70 employees cover the DORNIER service department taking care of hundreds of customers of the Product Lines Weaving Machines, Specialty Machines and Composite Systems. Which are the challenges for the service department of a traditional machinery and line manufacturer in 2020?

Our main task is to live by the DORNIER credo “Service adds value®“ – day by day. As technology leader, we as a company seek success by the technical progress. Our priority is the high quality of products and service among the service from commissioning and modernization over conversion, maintenance and repair to trainings.

A modern service concept has no longer to focus only on the spare parts business. Service needs to be proactive and cover all service areas starting from the installation and repairs on site up to remote diagnostics. For this purpose, DORNIER operates subsidiaries in the USA, India, China and Turkey. Our customers such as clothing manufacturers, textile weavers, manufacturer of film and composite components operate on highly flexible markets. An up to date service has fully to match up with this. 

Therefore, the service philosophy at DORNIER also is very important already during the engineering of the machinery and plants. The weaving machines’ system family for example builds on a robust machine frame with common electronics. This modular construction principle reduces the component variances, the maintenance requirements and thereby allows a substantial interchangeability of important accessories and spare parts. This saves costs for the customer and reduces storage. In order that long-term customers having elder plants and machines are able to operate on the highest production level, we offer investigations of machines and plants. Thus, our service and development department are in close communication – always in consultation with the customer – for our leading equipment to be further developed in a meaningful way and for increasing the efficiency by conversions and upgrades.

The service is getting an unique selling point that is more and more important in companies.  In which way will DORNIER act to be future-orientated in these times of digitalization?

New technologies especially in the virtual world have to be added to the plant and machinery. During the ITMA 2019, the new customer portal myDoX® was introduced which underlines the technological pioneering role also in the digital sector. This permits a worldwide 24/7 online shop as a digital procurement and supplier management tool. In addition, DoXPOS – Parts Order System allows checking the availability of more than 100.000 original parts and their delivery time. The customer portal myDoX® is going to be developed continuously so that wireless transmission of machine data, remote diagnostics and access to spare parts orders will be possible in future.

As the personal relationship with our customers is important to us even in the virtual era, our IT specialists work on remote service and remote training offers. At the push of a button or touch on a smartphone or tablet, customers can get in direct contact with our experts – wherever they are in the world. It is also planned that in the future, our machines and lines  will increasingly carry out predictive maintenance whose history is stored and kept ready for retrieval, independently. This will further improve running characteristics and further reduce maintenance and downtimes.

Customers appreciate the personal technical service of your company. What is unique about it?

Support is not a marginal aspect for us but part of our strategic orientation. Many customers appreciate the fact that the focus is on people, too. They appreciate our values which characterize us as a family-owned company: modesty, honesty, respect, integrity and loyalty. Of course, these values also determine the service we provide in which we maintain a significant cooperative relationship with our customers. Just as we design our machines and lines  in close cooperation with you and your requirements, we are also constantly developing our service portfolio in intensive exchange with our partners.

Our aim is not to offer the widest possible range of services but to systematically develop high-quality services. Our goal is to safeguard the product characteristics typical of technology leader DORNIER over the entire service life of the often patented systems and components. This is not only to maintain the competitiveness of our customers but to ensure that they always have a decisive advantage. This includes trouble-free processes, low reaction-, throughput- and problem-solving times but also high spare parts availability and their on-time delivery. Fast reactions to customer enquiries, lean processes in both, analogue and digital, and customized service solutions are all part of our everyday life – but we never treat them as daily routine.  

Sustainability is a major issue of the times. How does DORNIER's service approach this?

The modernization of elder generations of machines and systems is an effective means of adapting them to current sustainability requirements. Machines and linesfrom DORNIER are known for their long service life. Our engineers always develop upgrades, updates and technical retrofits in such a way that even machines and systems up to 60 years old can be adapted to the most modern requirements – for us an important contribution to sustainability and environmental compatibility.

This also includes the optimization of energy efficiency. DORNIER offers an inventory of the energy consumption of its machines and systems by special service technicians. They identify potential savings and make appropriate retrofit proposals. Let's take the example of film stretching lines for the production of biaxial oriented polyester film: in 2018, we completed the development of a new air duct for the transverse stretching section of the line which has since been patented. It can reduce the consumption of thermal energy by up to 35 % compared with older generations of lines.

But the sustainability impact of production technology also depends on its service life. Through regular maintenance and overhaul of important components such as our clips that grip the film and transport it through the lines, the service department proactively contributes to the durability and value retention of DORNIER's machines and lines.