Since 1894, when the company applied for its first patent for a heating boiler, Junkers has been keeping people warm in their homes with products such as condensing boilers, water heaters, solar heating systems, geothermal heat pumps, and other products. Junkers, a division of BBT Thermotechnology Ltd. in Germany, has about 150 sales agents who serve approximately 1,300 wholesalers and 10,000 installers.
The company has set lofty goals for itself over the next few years, objectives that can only be achieved through good customer support and an efficient sales department. For the sales force to operate efficiently, it needs easy access to information about customers, product orders and deliveries, and planned building/installation projects.
Using Information Builders WebFOCUS business intelligence (BI) platform, the Junkers sales division now has an information system that lets users retrieve data in real time via customized reports that can be accessed via the Web or any desktop. A few years ago, however, Junkers employed four individuals who were charged solely with collecting data, compiling it for the distribution staff, and sending it via e-mail or fax. This not only took up extensive amounts of time; it slowed down the performance of underlying production systems.
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