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KHS creates global enthusiasm for new customer processes

KHS creates global enthusiasm for new customer processes: With successful digitalization in e-commerce and service and targeted change management.

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International change management at KHS

Successful digitalisation worldwide in e-commerce and service thanks to targeted change management

How can new digital services be succesfully and sustainably implemented into a corporate group operating worldwide? How do digitalisation projects achieve success when they affect customers and employees equally – and all within an international environment? The KHS Group found itself confronted with these questions exactly in the wake of an ambitious objective: implementation of a global e-commerce solution and digital realignment of the customer-service processes. KHS is among the leading manufacturers of filling and packaging lines for the beverages, food and non-food industry worldwide. The group sells its machines, provides consulting, optimises and develops new solutions for the entire life cycle of the systems at more than 70 locations around the globe. A complex  scenario for the company’s digitalisation project. Together with Sybit and the suitable change management approach, the company accomplished far more than the simple implementation of digital tools. It created enthusiasm for new processes.

Starting position

For a long time, KHS had been using a conventional e-commerce solution with which customers could request and order replacement parts via an online shop.  Over the years, this system had come against various limits. For one thing, its functional scope was no longer up to date. Furthermore, the legacy solution was limited to customers that had contact with KHS GmbH in Germany. As a result, the company’s objective to provide all customers with a state-of-the-art experience – particularly its international customers – could no longer be realised. Consequently, KHS decided to replace the shop that was purely for replacement parts with a holistic, global customer and service portal based on SAP CX Commerce. In parallel, they chose to also implement SAP CX Service, a system that supports the portal’s functions. As a result of this connection, above all, many internal processes and daily routines would change, especially for the Order Management team at KHS. These far-reaching process changes were one of the main reasons that KHS decided to implement the projects with Sybit and have the change fully supported by change management.

Another key reason is the company’s structures and the complex hierarchy levels with some 5,000 employees. KHS has five branches in Germany and around 70 worldwide. Accordingly, when performing a digital transformation of this scale, it is particularly important to take into account the cultural differences and different needs of the employees. Sybit's change management aims to reach the various stakeholders of the project, actively integrate different employees into the still ongoing change process and successfully accompany the change using proven techniques. The company realises: Implementing digitalisation projects worldwide can only be successful if the people who use the tools are involved as closely as possible and communication is transparent and consistent. KHS does not want to leave all of this to chance and chose to proactively support the transition from the start with change management. 

Project details

  • After almost a year, both solutions SAP CX Commerce and SAP CX Service are live in the German organisation
  • Step by step, each company will be equipped with the two components
  • Parallel set-up of Commerce and Service components and key users in both areas
  • Iterative procedure using Scrum methods until go-live
  • Before starting the implementation phase, national and international change management teams were set up 
  • For each legal entity, 1–4 Change Agents accompany the project in the foreign subsidiaries and approximately 20 in Germany

Results and highlights

  • High acceptance achieved in a challenging environment: Acceptance, understanding and employee involvement were successfully initiated and supported through change management even before the software went live. 
  • Tandems of key users and Change Agents a crucial success factor: Thanks to the key users and Change Agents, users have a contact person at all times, which noticeably fosters trust and transparency. The proactive integration of key users at an early stage allows faster implementation and high acceptance for the system. Key users regularly perform tests in small groups, allowing an optimised system to be presented to the broader user group.
  • Change management ensures noticeable results: Thanks to very close cooperation, KHS and Sybit achieve much more than the simple implementation of SAP CX Commerce and Service. They create broad acceptance at global level for the software and process changes and for change management as an integral component of digitalisation projects.

  • Entire range of measures employed: Stakeholder analyses, communication plans, documentation, FAQs, interactive workshops, Change Agent Teams for every branch of the company, mood barometer, feedback interviews, change calls and much more.

  • Significant advantages thanks to external partner: Sybit’s experience in IT projects and change management, the corresponding transfer of knowledge and, above all, concrete structural specifications meant that the project not only achieved short-term success, but established changes that were met with an ongoing positive response.

"We have achieved a great deal together with Sybit. The implementation of the new SAP tools in the commerce and service area allows us to offer our customers a holistic and transparent service in an international context, too, and provide relevant information in real time. This is only possible if you integrate the employees and convince them of the new tool. With change management, we were able to achieve these objectives very well and, having established feedback processes and mood surveys at an early stage, can also have a positive impact on training and communication documents. Moreover, strategic communication and monitoring of this ensure that information is brought into the company consistently and transparently."

Tatia Haupt,  Head of Development & Communication bei KHS


KHS Group implemented an extremely large-scale digitalisation project in the e-commerce and service area in such a way that it not only benefits the Group’s customers, but the required changes in the company also met with a positive response from the employees. KHS thus successfully got people behind the project and optimised analogue, administrative processes. A key component of this result was the professional change management that accompanied the project, provided by partner Sybit. This development is an ongoing process, which is one reason Sybit is still supporting KHS Group in its journey to optimise customer processes – both external and internal – worldwide.

"The decisive aspect was the cooperation with Sybit – an external partner who knows what to do and can help guide your own team. This was particularly important at the start of the project when there were lots of face-to-face appointments. Sybit was able to provide specific and reasonable impulses at all times. This professional guidance and the close cooperation with Sybit were crucial for the project’s success."

Tim Becker, Sales & Service Business Development Projects bei KHS


KHS Gruppe

The KHS Group is among the leading manufacturers of filling and packaging lines for beverages and liquid foods. The corporate group includes the parent company (KHS GmbH), numerous subsidiaries abroad with sites in Ahmedabad (India), Waukesha (USA), Zinacantepec (Mexico), São Paulo (Brazil) and Suzhou (China). At the headquarters in Dortmund, as well as in further plants in Bad Kreuznach, Kleve and Worms and at the Hamburg site, which forms the group’s PET expertise, KHS manufactures modern filling and packaging lines for the high-performance range. KHS Group is a 100-percent subsidiary of Salzgitter AG, which is listed in the SDAX.


Headquarter: Dortmund
Industry: Mechanical engineering
Employees: 5.149 (2019)
Revenue: 1,260 billion (2019)
Solutions: SAP CX Commerce, SAP CX Service

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