Success Story

A cloud-first approach with Microsoft Dynamics 365: Hirschvogel Group brings sales processes to the cloud

Products Microsoft: Dynamics 365 Sales
Sectors: Non sector-specific
Processes: Sales
References: Hirschvogel Group

True to the motto “traditionally innovative”, the Hirschvogel Group is also breaking new ground in IT – with a cloud-first approach. The Microsoft Dynamics 365 CRM cloud platform is now replacing an outdated on-premises installation of Microsoft CRM in the sales organization. This streamlines the IT architecture and allows for continuous CRM processes. Long-term IT partner ORBIS SE was entrusted with introducing it.

Almost every automobile in Germany or nearly one out of every three automobiles worldwide – with an internal combustion engine, electrical or hybrid engines – drives with a component of the Hirschvogel Group.

Innovation as a key success factor

When it comes to massive forming and the further processing of steel and aluminum, the company – headquartered in Denklingen in Oberbayern – is among the largest automobile suppliers in the world. As a development partner and manufacturing specialist for the automotive industry, it has mastered all the common production processes for massive forming.

Hirschvogel Group

Head office: Denklingen
Products: Powertrain components, transmission and chassis components as well as body and frame components
Sites: 9 production facilities in Europe, Asia, and America
Employees: Approx. 6,300 (2022)
Sales: €1.4 billion (2022)

In 2022, the Hirschvogel Group achieved sales of 1.4 billion euros at nine manufacturing locations in Europe (among them three in Germany), Asia, and America with roughly 6,300 employees. They have always secured the leading position on the market thanks to high product quality, the use of state-of-the-art manufacturing technologies, and – true to the motto “traditionally innovative” – through product and process innovations. Focusing on the business with CO2-free mobility concepts, i.e. “Green Business” and founding the bike and micromobility business division have also set the stage for future business success and further growth.

IT modernization with a cloud-first strategy

A key success factor for the company group’s success is increasing the level of digitalization of the business processes based on a modern, scalable, powerful and cost-efficient IT landscape.

In our view, this goal is best achieved using a cloud-first strategy. Therefore, we strive to use SaaS solutions, provided that they meet our requirements and deliver added value,” says Manuel Schleich, Head of IT Business Services at the Hirschvogel Group.

The implementation of the Microsoft Dynamics 365 CRM cloud platform, which replaces an outdated on-premises installation of Microsoft Dynamics CRM in the sales organization, marks the achievement of an important milestone.

The cloud CRM offers a streamlined IT architecture, enables seamless, continuous sales processes, and impresses with its usability,” explains Mariel Klein, IT In-House Consultant and Project Lead at the Hirschvogel Group.

Continuous sales processes thanks to cloud CRM

The roughly 550 CRM users worldwide are already taking advantage of the cloud solution for document management and reporting – mainly in the quotation process as part of customer inquiries (request for quotation, RFQ).

Nowadays, you can use a proprietary app that seamlessly integrates into the Cloud CRM to record the outcomes of the weekly RFQ meetings, which defines the customer inquiries for which a quotation is created. As a result, the outcomes are available directly in the CRM, which is likewise connected via a calculation software interface where the quotation is calculated.

Even managing the documents created during the quotation process has become easier and more efficient ever since the Hirschvogel Group has converted from the SAP document management system (DVS) to Microsoft SharePoint: Now the documents are transferred from the cloud CRM directly to SharePoint and are no longer awkwardly exchanged between the CRM and DVS via the iDoc interface and intermediate Microsoft BizTalk server.


Mariel Klein, IT Inhouse Consultant und Project Lead, Hirschvogel Group

Mariel Klein, IT Inhouse Consultant and Project Lead, Hirschvogel Group

The Microsoft Power BI analysis solution provides a clear overview of the business, delivering the necessary KPI reports at the click of a mouse. Cloud CRM allows for direct integration of the reports into the CRM. This allows for well-founded as well as faster decisions based on current figures.

Data access around the clock and everywhere

Sales-related data is centrally merged and managed in the Azure cloud across locations, enabling any CRM user to access it at any time. If the cloud CRM were unavailable for a while at a location, e.g., due to a power outage, the other locations can nonetheless continue to operate smoothly.

SaaS cloud operation also eases the burden for internal IT. They do not need to either worry about building, operating, or servicing an IT infrastructure nor loading updates and new features and do not have to plan and execute any time-consuming and costly release changes either. Unlike the old on-premises CRM, the cloud solution is always state-of-the-art, since Microsoft releases new features and upgrades in relatively short intervals, i.e., evergreen IT.

We have found the right introduction partner

In order to overcome all the challenges related to introducing the cloud software, managers were seeking a suitable IT partner. They found it in ORBIS SE, which impressed with its know-how in sales processes in the automobile supplier industry and in Microsoft Dynamics 365. Since the Hirschvogel Group has already been collaborating with international IT service providers in the Microsoft CRM space for several years, they are also familiar with the processes in the company. 

The well-coordinated, partner-like collaboration and the use of DevOps methods were a significant contributing factor in completing the introduction of the cloud CRM on time in spite of a “risky” deadline.

“The tight deadline was due to the fact that the cloud CRM had to be operational before the system conversion from SAP ECC 6.0 to ERP Suite SAP S/4HANA was completed and its go live took place in May of this year,” explains Mariel Klein.

Overcoming challenges with success

Some of the challenges included converting numerous plug-ins, which were required for special process requirements, or implementing the business partner from SAP S/4HANA in cloud CRM via mapping, including transferring the customer data system from CRM to ERP. Apart from connecting the CRM to the EPC software, one important requirement for end-to-end sales processes was also transferring data from the ERP to Microsoft Dynamics 365, which was made possible by the ORBIS experts using the ORBIS IntegrationONE solution.

Manuel Schleich sums up a positive experience:

„Microsoft Dynamics 365 from the cloud enables us to build a streamlined and integrated CRM landscape with continuous processes that remain in a single IT environment. This creates the agility that is needed so that the sales organization can quickly respond to market changes such as fluctuations in prices of raw materials and energy and new customer requirements, and enables us to timely adapt the quotation calculations as part of an RFQ.“

Manuel Schleich, Head of IT Business Services, Hirschvogel Group

Manuel Schleich, Hirschvogel Group
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