SABAG is a family-run business that has been firmly established in the Swiss construction trade since 1913. Headquartered in Biel, Switzerland, the company previously offered its services to architects, contractors, and builders in a non-digital way only. Together with UFirst, SABAG conceptualized and developed the cornerstones of its digital business model.
Creating a digital business model from scratch is both promising and challenging. SABAG could have started out in all directions as there was untapped potential everywhere, from back-office areas such as product data and order management to front-office areas such as customer data management and the branches.
In collaboration with SABAG, UFirst developed an approach to determine which areas should be prioritized. Apart from the business model, the UFirst team based this decision on a number of other factors such as existing data and IT systems, organizational factors and, of course, the future user.
The team decided to start off with a simple, filterable list of products. The goal was to analyze the quality of the existing product data swiftly and then initiate the appropriate measures for data enrichment. The so-called data-first approach once again proved extremely practical and expedient as it eliminated the need for lengthy, theoretical interface modeling. The product lists were organized into small and concrete packages so that they could be implemented without any dependencies and used immediately by internal stakeholders and customers.
The quality of data is not apparent in databases. It is only revealed through prototypes.
The tactical step with small, functional packages did not make strategic planning unnecessary: Due to the importance of retaining long-term customers, the development of a digital customer portal was chosen as a strategic cornerstone. All functional packages of the customer portal were conceptualized, developed, and validated by users within a few days to create customer value and receive feedback as quickly as possible. This approach meant that the conceptualization and development processes were tangible and could be planned.
The example of SABAG highlights how companies prioritize differently within a digital business model. SABAG deliberately uses the available freedom to adapt its focus at any time in order to respond more effectively to the market environment.
So what was the decisive reason why UFirst chose Spryker’s Operating System (OS) for the project? The priorities of SABAG required a modular OS that is not solely oriented towards e-commerce but provides the freedom to choose different approaches. Spryker delivers standard modules that are used depending on the business model, which keeps the OS slim. For SABAG, this created an ideal balance between the solid Spryker standard and customized solutions developed by the UFirst team.
A fast go-live of functional packages requires an agile approach, but also the right infrastructural framework. Watch our interview to learn more about the success factors for a fast time to market.