New Work at the Berndorf Band Group

Continuously working on the future

Berndorf, March 2022 – Digitalization and especially the pandemic have caused massive disruption to the working world of many people in recent years. The Berndorf Band Group is responding to these constantly changing demands as well in order to enable even more flexibility and collaboration in the future. With this in mind, we implemented an integrated Modern Workplace solution based on SharePoint to make an advanced way of working possible. Also, the entire finance and accounting system was migrated to the latest generation of SAP. Find out more here why the well-established company in Lower Austria is also tackling the topic of Industry 4.0 and why its new intranet has a very special name.

When the modern world of work meets tradition

The Berndorf Band Group is an international market leader in the production of steel belts and belt systems and looks back on more than 90 years of experience in the industry. During this time, however, not only has the number of employees grown but the systems and processes have also multiplied. Naturally, in very different directions. That’s why the company used the time during the COVID-19 pandemic to bring itself back up to date. The aim was to harmonize systems, improve communication – both internally and externally – and automate time-consuming processes. Not exactly an easy task, given the group’s roughly 400 employees and numerous subsidiaries and partner companies in Europe, Asia, North and South America.

Modern ways of working with SharePoint

The first step was to analyze the many disparate systems used internally to manage documents and processes. Based on this analysis, the responsible team at the Berndorf Band Group decided on an intranet built on SharePoint.

The advantages of this solution are obvious:

  • All employees can access a clickable process map, which enables better collaboration on projects.
  • In the AI-assisted media area, it is very easy to search by keywords.
  • There is a separate ticket system in the document library to create and process user messages.
  • The onboarding solution for new employees simplifies the training process.

Employees can now keep up to date with the latest developments via the Berndorf Band Group’s new intranet, where news articles are published and where the individual departments can present themselves and their areas of responsibility. To ensure that the entire workforce would get behind this project from the outset, the company came up with something rather unique at their headquarters in Berndorf, Lower Austria: a mascot.

An internal vote was held to decide the name. From now on “Bruno” (derived from the bear in the company’s logo) will ensure good humor on the intranet. In addition to the SharePoint-based intranet, the company now uses Microsoft Teams for internal communication. The cloud-based solution means all content and functions are accessible regardless of the user’s location. It’s one more building block that supports a modern way of working and that strengthens cohesion within the company.

Implemented asap: the latest SAP solution

A globally active company like the Berndorf Band Group also relies on state-of-the-art technologies for its finance and accounting. The first step was to identify the need. Since the world market leader for steel belts and belt systems had been relying on SAP for decades, the program was expanded. The project managers focused on a forward-looking plan to allow for the integration of all affected systems and systems planned for the future.

The kick-off for the “New General Ledger” project, as it is known internally, was held at the beginning of 2020. The migration to the new general ledger, which included the roll-out of the ledger solution and implementation of the new asset accounting in May 2021, then became the basis for the subsequent, successful migration to S/4HANA, the latest generation of SAP.

Right from the start, the users involved at the Berndorf Band Group were enthusiastic and highly motivated to take the next step toward digitalization. S/4HANA was immediately usable and relevant in everyday business. It was used to optimize all the company’s financial and internal control processes, suddenly parallel and decentralized entries were possible, and the solution also provided impressive features such as document splitting for segment reporting and options for profit center accounting.

The right direction: The future

With the introduction of Modern Workplace and the update to SAP, the issue of digitalization is of course far from finished at the Berndorf Band Group. There are constantly smaller new projects to deal with topics such as New Work and Industry 4.0 in particular. The latter is opening up a lot of opportunities for the internationally producing company. From productivity and efficiency increases to more flexible production processes, cost reductions, and resource conservation, to opening new business models to ensure the maximum possible benefit for customers. The importance of digitalization and process optimization for businesses has also been highlighted by the pandemic and its impact on the world of work.

And we do not know what challenges the future will bring. In our company’s long history, the Berndorf Band Group has proven time and again how adaptable and flexible it is when it comes to change. That’s why we keep it rolling to offer our customers the best quality and services and provide them non-stop – like our Steel Belts and Belt Systems – with the best possible support.