Vestas is the world’s leading company within wind energy. Vestas designs, manufactures, installs and services wind turbines across the globe and currently employs more than 23000 people. With 63500 wind turbines in 80 countries, Vestas has installed more wind power than anyone else and is well en route to fulfill its vision of becoming the global leader in sustainable energy solutions altogether.
Digitization plays a main role in realizing this ambitious and unmistakable vision. A vision which will expand the Vestas offering to include data-driven services, thus paving the way for the wind giant to claim the mantle of digital leadership within the sustainable energy industry.
VP for Digital Transformation at Vestas Service, Christian Frederiksen, explains:
“Vestas is in a unique position to revolutionize the sustainable energy business worldwide and we are doing so by ambitiously pursuing a digitization that will transform not only the experience we offer our customers but also our own value-chain. With Energy Management Software we can help customers optimize their renewable assets across the full energy value chain and by applying our knowledge, our reach, our data and our experience within digitization, we will bring Vestas and our customers into this exciting new era of digital opportunity together.”
Vestas’ digital ambitions rest on five pillars: 1) Scale: Vestas has the size and the profitability to invest and scale digital solutions. 2) Market Reach: Vestas has an unmatched global reach and customer base. 3) Industry Knowledge: Vestas has the deep industry knowledge and experience to create transformative digital solutions. 4) Data: Vestas has the biggest data repository in the industry. 5) Digital Track Record: As a pioneer in the industry, Vestas has a history of being digital first movers.
These five pillars are the foundation for Vestas’ digital transformation. A journey that encompasses the entire sustainable energy value chain. A journey that entails new ways of working across disciplines and divisions. And a journey that requires the adoption of an agile mindset and the enrollment of new competences and skill sets in order for Vestas to become a full solution provider.
As Vestas’ digital and customer experience partner for almost a decade, we have been fortunate enough to witness their ambitions and to help turn these ambitions into the first practical, value adding, digital services for the customers.
Digital transformation is ultimately about transforming the business model. However, to achieve this transformation, Vestas understands that both the external perspective (the customer experience) and the internal perspective (operations) need to change as well. Only by seeing the business model, the customer experience and the operations as one, companies can successfully transform themselves.
The internal perspective is primarily about driving down cost to increase profitability. For Vestas, this has been brought to life through major initiatives across the value-chain. For instance, Vestas is developing a state-of-the-art digital field service program. By turning +43 digital technician tools into one, Vestas is ensuring that service technicians always have information and documentation at hand. Vestas is also developing a scheduling engine that ensures cost-out through bundling and offers advanced data-driven decision making in the planning and scheduling operations.
As for the external perspective - the customer experience - the objective is two-sided. It is both a way of differentiating from competitors and a way of growing revenue. The digital customer experience also has three main components.
First, VestasOnline is a best-in-class collaboration platform and a hub of digital tools that customers use to carry out day-to-day tasks. The platform contains essential customer touch points like service schedules and service order reports. It also offers a variety of data-driven, innovative services, like the Blade Assets Management viewer, that provides customers with accessible insights into the conditions of their blades and recommended actions, for instance for repairs.
Second, Vestas has introduced Shop Vestas - a large-scale e-commerce solution. Here, customers can quickly identify and order the right spare part Vestas turbines as well as other brands among +25.000 items. This helps minimize the cost of ownership and maximize the uptime of the turbines.
The third customer-facing initiative is brought to the customers through Vestas’ acquisition of the New York-based company Utopus Insights. Utopus offers an extremely advanced dashboard that leverages the power of live and historical data from wind turbine assets. This offers immediate access to a customized view of operational metrics for peak asset performance, and now Vestas’ customers will also benefit from the analytical powers of Utopus.
Vestas is well under way to transforming its business. The service business revenue is growing steadily, and this is just one element of the journey towards life cycle management and value adding digital services.
A growing part of Vestas' customer interactions are being digitized and customers have adopted Vestas’ digital platforms at a rapid pace. More than 6.000 users are already enrolled on the VestasOnline platform, and the year-on-year growth in number of logins is at a staggering 116%.
55% of all contract customers use the workspace provided in VestasOnline for project collaboration, and more than 400.000 Service Order Reports are downloaded each year. This means that more than 58% of all reports are now digitized. Soon, more than 100.000 invoices will be added as well.
As for Vestas’ sales, customers have also been quick to embrace eCommerce as the new way of purchasing. Customers are buying everything from low-priced items to main components of more than a 100 000 EUR per unit.
On average, the quarter on quarter number of orders through Shop Vestas has grown more than 20% following the launch, and some Sales Business Units have seen months with more than 85% of their total part sales transactions supported via Shop Vestas.
For Vestas, there is a clear correlation between customers’ use of digital services and their loyalty to Vestas in general. In developing a wide range of digital offerings, Vestas is taking the first important steps towards the transformation of the entire energy value chain, creating value for customers and for Vestas itself, and ultimately driving down the cost of renewable energy.