Royal Canin North America

Premium product with premium care

Dedicated to providing health through premium nutrition for pets, Royal Canin North America wanted to build a more effective relationship with its customers and consumers. Stocking and product shortages during the pandemic caused the company to rethink its production and distribution management processes.

Challenge

The company’s customers needed to know that orders would be fulfilled even if the products weren’t available in their area. Customer Care also had to become easier to access and more efficient.

Solution

Royal Canin North America engaged the Fujitsu GLOVIA OM solution, implemented before the pandemic, to enhance predictability and strengthen its relationships with customers and consumers.

Outcomes

  • Rebuilding trust with better availability of products across distribution channels
  • Providing better service through improved customer care
  • Improved engagement through advanced loyalty programs
It’s not just the solution, it’s how you implement it. It’s the partner, the deployment, the plan, the change management.

Rick Hall, Chief Information Officer, Royal Canin North America

About the customer

Founded in 1968, Royal Canin North America specializes in nutrition as the pet’s first medicine. It is the largest brand of Mars Petcare, the world’s leading pet food manufacturer, worldwide (2021). Headquartered in France with a significant and growing presence in North America, it focuses on researching symptom-specific nutritional requirements of cats and dogs to improve their health through tailored nutrition.

Rethinking order management post pandemic

Today’s pet owners want to know that they’re providing their animals with the right nutrition. It needs to be tailored not only to the pet’s age and size but also to their health needs. For example, some pets are allergic to proteins or grains. Royal Canin North America is a subsidiary of Mars Incorporated, offering reliable and health-centric foods while depending on pet specialty stores and vet clinics to sell and recommend its products.

“We don’t have holiday seasons in pet food manufacturing, because pets don’t care,” says Rick Hall, Chief Information Officer at Royal Canin North America. “Our demand is based on organic and future growth. When the pandemic hit, the intensity of the pantry loading of our product created a giant demand because people weren’t able to go shopping or to go to their clinics to get the food their vets.”

With this experience Royal Canin North America started rethinking the way it processes orders. Although before the pandemic, the company was already focusing on streamlining its warehousing and data processing with Fujitsu’s GLOVIA OM, it was now also under pressure to provide a more modern and flexible experience to the customer. Seeing the whole distribution and production processes on one platform and leveraging that toward customers could help the company reach its goal.

“We need to make sure that we have the ability to service our customers at the premium level that matches our product,” says Hall. “And now that we’re venturing into direct-to-customer (D2C), we also need to meet the consumers’ needs."

New solutions with existing tools

Using the Fujitsu tool, Royal Canin North America is developing and finalizing a new, multi-faceted approach to building trust and reliability. “For the pet owner, it’s a conscious journey to find our product,” says Hall. “They can’t just go to the grocery store for it, and if we don’t make it easy, they’re going to find something else. So, we need to deliver on the level of service experience that our customers are expecting. At vet clinics, people are placing orders with us digitally and their expectation of a smooth shopping experience grew tenfold through the pandemic.”

This is why one of the significant improvements through leveraging GLOVIA OM was the creation of back ordering.

What’s more, customer care at Royal Canin North America used to require employees to work from five screens to find the correct information related to invoicing, order status, shipping, back orders, and availability of inventory among others. “Fujitsu’s solution has put it all on one screen,” comments Hall. “This is one of the reasons why we did this transformation. It was for our customer care to service our business customers better.”

Royal Canin North America believes that no one solution or system is going to be the only answer to company challenges. Its people, processes, and how things are managed all contribute to the organization’s performance. It treats order management solutions as a product that needs to constantly evolve to meet the needs of internal customers such as the supply chain or the demand planning. Hall says: “We must know what we need to change to help them do their job better. So, we look at OMS as a product and the GLOVIA solution is an integral foundation of that.”

Building on this idea of constant improvement, an important part of the modernization effort will rely on data and the organization recently started to develop a focus on data and analytics. “Data is everywhere,” says Hall. “And it’s not just about a technical solution; it’s the data you create, consume, and manage. Fujitsu’s support is going to be instrumental in helping us make more data-based decisions.”

Creating more meaningful relationships

The company is focusing on allocation and segmentation of inventory, putting a conscious thought into what using the Fujitsu platform will mean in the future for customer care and not only for business processes.

Leveraging existing systems in more flexible and inventive ways will help Royal Canin North America future proof its business while avoiding unnecessary investments. But the company’s journey is not simply about finding the right product. “It’s not just the solution,” says Hall. “It’s how you implement it. It’s the partner, the deployment, the plan, the change management. And from day one, I’ve seen a receptiveness from Fujitsu and was conscious of them wanting to have trust between us.” Fujitsu’s support has always been one based on partnership and trust and both companies are looking forward to helping Royal Canin North America achieve its goals.

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