Banner is using the opportunity created by digitalisation to study joint processes and thus avoid isolated solutions.


Digitalisation is not an end in itself, but rather is aimed at raising levels of competitiveness, efficiency and customer orientation. Furthermore, an optimum overall solution is only possible when every process interlocks.

Thomas Schmidt

Head of Purchasing and Logistics

In the purchasing area digital technologies offer innumerable possibilities. Some aspects of supplier orders are already virtually fully automated from the stated requirement to delivery, but at present invoicing checks are not included. However, this is soon to change and then Purchasing will only intervene in cases where deviations (price, quality, quantity, delivery date) occur. Every other aspect is to be automated to the greatest possible extent, which will require close and open cooperation with suppliers.

In addition, in times of uncertainty (trade disputes, COVID-19), the supervision of delivery chains within the scope of risk management constitutes a major factor in the generation of competitive advantages. The monitoring of suppliers and transport routes is automatic and operates virtually in real time, in order to allow an early response to disruptions within the supply chain.

During the COVID-19 crisis, our proactive risk management maintained the supply of manufacturing materials and protective equipment such as fine dust masks, without which production in the areas employing lead is forbidden. The intensive communications with our strategic suppliers, who also come from Italy, France and the UK, which were countries hard hit by the corona virus, also proved to be a major success factor because at the first sign of possible delivery interruptions we were able to react promptly and in time. However, it was frequently the case that not only supplier output provided us with headaches, but also the transportation of the goods to Banner. Transport times lengthened and trucks were basically difficult to obtain. In such times of crisis it helps to have longterm partners upon whom one can rely.


This situation also showed that in order that everything functions when it is most needed, supplier management simply
cannot be neglected in times when everything is running smoothly.


One has to know one’s material groups, suppliers and dependencies, be ready for crises and prepare options in advance, which if needed can be relied upon. In our estimation, the current situation will remain tense for months to come and although in the meantime a certain degree of normality has returned, we remain on the alert and in close consultation with our suppliers and logistics partners.


In future, we will pay even greater attention to external logistics in order to tighten our control over goods flows. At present, we are implementing this approach with regard to imports from Asia and are developing an information system that will pinpoint where goods are located. We hope that this will provide us with more precise information regarding delivery time and dates.


The possibilities offered by digitalisation are certain to increase and we intend to do everything possible to use them to optimum effect in the interests of our employees, suppliers and customers.

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