Henry Schein (NASDAQ: HSIC) was founded in 1932 in New York. Today it is one of the largest dental and animal care providers in the United States and the world’s largest distributor of dental equipment and supplies.
In the era when more and more companies move their operations online, how can a B2B company like Henry Schein not only embrace the digitalization change, but also use it to its own advantage? How to use digital transformation as a jumpboard and upgrade various aspects of the enterprise: from procurement and manufacturing to design and marketing — potentially ending up with an absolutely new business model?
TMO’s role was to be the main driver of Henry Schein’s digital transformation – finding and developing the company’s new eCommerce platform.
Henry Schein has presence in a number of countries in Asia, and each regional branch can benefit from a country-specific eCommerce solution. Therefore, the platform needs to be centralized in terms of development, deployment, IT support, and core architecture, but at the same time implementation and operation details should follow local requirements.
Final decision was to choose Adobe Commerce (Magento): a multi-language, milti-locale system, full to the brim with B2B-focused functions and features.
Extensively communicating with regional offices, we carried out a detailed analysis of internal processes, estimated digital maturity of different branches, scrutinized existing operational and organizational structures. This allowed us to clearly define problems and challenges, bring to light pain points, and locate opportunities that digital technology can create on every level of the organization’s structure. Finally, we closely worked with Henry Schein’s managing team to develop achievable and sustainable B2B eCommerce models and strategies.
Framework for eCommerce in Asia
Resulting system comprises two major themes: one for China and one for other Southeast Asian countries. Each theme encompasses core functionality, UI, and workflow and can be customized further on a country/region level. Such customizations include different payment methods, different rules for legal compliance, and different social media integration.
250.000 SKUs in catalog
The digital catalog is expected to contain over 250.000 SKUs (unique products) – such a big number is not unusual for a company that serves a wide range of B2B and B2b customers. It also presents a challenge for product catalog design that should offer easy navigation and excellent user experience. By implementing a system of intuitive filters and searches we made all 250.000 items easily accessible, helping users to effortlessly find required products.
Shaping the B2B digital experience
New digital experience, we created for Henry Schein, is geared towards increasing conversion and optimizing eCommerce operations overall. Here are some of the features that we developed:
- Multi-dimensional approach to pricing, known in Chinese eCommerce as “1000 people, 1000 prices”
- Multi-person purchase decision process
- Negotiation process
- Full range of payment methods, applicable for China and South East Asia, covering all major scenarios: online and offline transfers, company’s credit etc.
- Consistent user journey across all platforms (website and mini-program) and login methods (email, mobile number, WeChat/Line login)
- Features to streamline B2B workflow: purchase lists, one-click repurchase, product list upload and so on.
Automation of Business Processes
To implement automatic order fulfillment, inventory management, billing and financial monitoring, we integrated the eCommerce platform into relevant company’s systems. This integration can also be used to monitor closely each link of the business process chain, immediately addressing any bottlenecks.
Building data assets
The eCommerce platform is a focal point for a number of data generating processes: browsing, communication with the company, order placement, payment processing, logistics and a few others. Collected data is processed and stored for future analysis. It will give Henry Schein insights into user’s behavior on the new platform, and serve as an impartial feedback on the introduction of the new features. It can also be an invaluable tool in examining the efficiency of internal operations.
TMO helped Henry Schein to convey the benefits of digitalization to relevant user groups (be it customers, partners or employees), making them true evangelists of the new platform. We also participated in planning and production of marketing content (for example, short videos) that can be used to influence B2B users, to raise their level of digital literacy.