Deutschland GmbH moves energy. The specialist for mobile heating, cooling and steam plants rents its systems throughout Germany with a 24-hour service, 365 days a year. Hotmobil’s former ERP system had reached its limits, thanks to substantial growth in the number of devices and expansion of services. The company chose Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Azure resulting in a consistent and integrated solution for all core business processes. 

The Hotmobil challenge: IT migration in between summer and winter

When it is too cold or too hot, Hotmobil offers the solution. The company has eight branches in Germany and rents out mobile heating, cooling and steam control systems. Whether for building heating, district heating, air conditioning or bridging a heating failure, Hotmobil has the right solution in the right format, for heating or just cooling, from single-family homes to large construction sites.

“Speed and flexibility mean everything to our customers,” says Rainer Notter, Co-Managing Director of Hotmobil. “In half of the cases it is an emergency, for example if the heating or air conditioning system has failed. Our goal is to fix every issue throughout Germany within a few hours.”

Future-proof ERP solution needed

Hotmobil has greatly expanded its business in recent years. The application areas for mobile heating systems range from screed drying and hot water supply to process energy in factories and heating tents at events. The multitude of products and services places high demands on Enterprise Resource Planning.

“Our previous ERP software was not able to integrate all of our business units,” Notter continues. “When we wanted to grow even further, it was clear that we needed a modern, future-proof ERP solution that integrates and supports all core business processes and connects all relevant subsystems. And in addition, a modern control system for the best possible transparency with regard to quantities and costs of power.”

Hotmobil was already working with Microsoft partner HSO. HSO’s team recommended the cloud-based software Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Finance & Operations. The biggest challenge for the project management turned out to be the extreme seasonal fluctuations in the company’s business. For example, mobile central heating systems are especially in demand during the period from September to March, and cooling systems go hard in the summer. This is why Dynamics 365 has been implemented in phases.

Cloud-based inventory management for service and warehouse Hotmobil

First, the two core activities rental and sales were migrated to the Microsoft Azure Cloud. The migration went smoothly. Financial administration, purchasing, logistics and production followed. The management was enthusiastic: “The speed with which we can now evaluate data across the board is enormous. With Dynamics 365, everything from quotation to invoice is available at a glance and we have more possibilities for tracking and evaluation. The integrated system maps business processes from A to Z and gives us a 360-degree view into our customer information.”

Hotmobil GmbH’s 85 employees manage a total of 1,000 rental units, ranging from the size of a washing machine to that of a shipping container. They manage a multitude of complex tasks for which they are now supported by Dynamics 365 F&O. Warehouse and service departments use a unified interface on their cell phones, tablets and computers that provides access to all the information they need. For example, when a service employee drives to a customer, he indicates via the app which parts he is taking out of stock or later returning them to the warehouse if they are not needed. Previously, this was done manually, a time-consuming process. The system can now be used at any time to check the availability of plants throughout Germany. Previously, the various locations had to be contacted individually.

Maximum flexibility and speed with Dynamics 365

Customers benefit from a significantly faster service and employees no longer have to manually keep track of data. They can plan ahead and always have current stock on hand. “We can take better care of our customers and respond better to their needs,” summarizes Rainer Notter. “Dynamics 365 enables us to adapt our processes to the business needs – and not the other way around.”

Hotmobil continues to grow and Dynamics 365 provides maximum flexibility and speed for all business applications for this purpose. No new IT infrastructure is required when hiring new employees or opening new locations. Moreover, Microsoft’s solution is future-proof: whether predictive maintenance, a transparent service history over the entire life cycle of devices or new pricing models based on the evaluation of consumption data.

 

Rainer Notter | Co-Managing Director van Hotmobil

“Our continued growth requires a cloud-based IT solution that provides us with the greatest possible flexibility and room for maneuver.”