Siegfried Gänßlen, Welcome speech

Siegfried Gänßlen, Member of the Board, International Association of Controllers, opened the biggest controlling conference in Europe, Controlling Congress 2018 organized by the ICV. In his welcome speech he said that a high numer of participants shows that the motto of the Congress, „Controlling on the Move”, touched the hearts of controllers.

Quick digital transformation of the sociaty and business means big changes for the companies and for controlling. For controllers it means the need for quick moves and high mobility, to follow these changes. Digital transformation means no longer only product innovations but also influence on the business models and company management. “We have to prepare for a future of radical breaks,” said Gänßlen. Also in controlling “success or quick failure” is required; This concerns products as well as processes and projects in companies”.

Gänßlen said that controllers have to take part in creating new controlling. „This challenges us as controllers and at the same time opens up opportunities for us to continue to train, specialize and help make controlling more of a driver of the digital business model.” Referring to the Congress motto, “Controlling on the Move”, Gänßlen declared: “We are at the beginning of the movement.” Controllers have now “a fantastic opportunity to drive this movement forward, to be there, to shape, to open new fields, and stake out new claims”.

Dr. Ralf P. Thomas, CFO, Siemens AG

Dr. Thomas spoke about the 170 years of Siemens history. Werner von Siemens always lived the future more than the present – also today Siemens focused on disruptive strategies –digitalization is now a topic that connects iniciatives in the portfolio of Siemens. In its strategy Siemens always asks about possible paradigma changes and sees them as a chance.

The tasks of controllers will be massively changed by digitalization. According to studies from the US, over the next 20 years 50 percent of the current jobs can be replaced because of digitalization. Everyone must be prepared to question themselves and learn new things. Siemens has introduced a practical training for its employees to accompany the digital transformation. myFrog is a platform at Siemens that provides insight into digital solutions from various areas of the Siemens universe. The particular potential of myFrog is that there is something for every Siemens employee.

When you are finished changing, you are finished. (Benjamin Franklin)

„ICV Controlling Excellence Award 2018“ for Robert Bosch GmbH

Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Jürgen Weber, Director, Institute for Management and Controlling (IMC) at the WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management, Vallendar, Chairman of the ICV Board of Trustees, gave the „ICV Controlling Excellence Award 2018“ to the Robert Bosch GmbH, Division Powertrain Solutions (Diesel Systems), Stuttgart, for the solution „Big Data-Based Approach to Optimizing Net Working Capital at Bosch / Diesel Systems“.

The Jury of the International Association of Controllers headed by Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Jürgen Weber nominated three candidates for the Award: Brau Union Österreich AG, Linz with the project “KPI Framework in the Supply Chain of the Brau Union Österreich AG”, Robert Bosch GmbH, Division Powertrain Solutions (Diesel Systems), Stuttgart with the project “Big Data-Based Approach to Optimizing Net Working Capital at Bosch / Diesel Systems” and the Verband der Ersatzkassen e.V. (vdek), Berlin with the project “National Health Insurance Planning Tool as Controlling Solution of the vdek for Planning of the Financial Development in the Legal Health Insurance”.

Nominating and choosing the winner was a difficult task for the Jury, says Prof. Weber because „the quality of the solutions this year has never been so high”. The solution of the winner is a digitalization example and is up to date for the entire controlling community.

The winner of the Controlling Excellence Award 2018 is Robert Bosch GmbH, Powertrain Solutions, with the solution „Big Data-Based Approach to Optimizing Net Working Capital at Bosch / Diesel Systems“. The winners presented their solution in plenum.

Economic framework conditions are changing faster and faster, and controlling in the Powertrain Solutions Division of Robert Bosch GmbH is also facing the challenge of adequately adapting controlling methods and processes. In order to establish controllers as business partners in accordance with own controller mission statement, efficiency increases and a higher level of automation in the basic processes must be achieved. For these reasons, the Powertrain Solutions Division has developed a digitalization roadmap, which aims at the widespread use of Big Data tools in controlling by 2021. In addition to adapting the IT infrastructure, this required additional skills for controllers in dealing with Big Data. Finally, organizational adjustments were required in terms of long-term collaboration across cross-functional teams to analyze and manipulate results from Big Data applications. In order to gain experience with the use of Big Data and the resulting challenges in the practical example, a first project was started in 2017 with a Big Data & Analytics Tool. This has closed a hitherto existing gap in controlling in dealing and the associated working capital optimization by modern algorithms. As a result, the project has already uncovered conflicts of interest within working capital, analyzed viable potentials and recorded employee experience in working with BI tools. Based on the up-to-date, detailed data from the Big Data & Analytics Tool, Bosch Powertrain Solutions can now uncover potentials and, with the help of alert functions, react in a timely manner with the affected departments in case of deviations. With the transfer of the project to operations in 2018, the company is now taking an important step in this direction.

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