Management approach customer relations
After the restrictions enforced as a result of the pandemic in the two previous years, there was a huge desire for personal exchanges in the sanitary industry. Fortunately, many events such as trade fairs, training courses and seminars were again able to take place in the reporting year. Sales representatives were also able to intensify personal visits to customers again. However, in the second half of the year the challenging market environment manifested itself in a cautious mood among consumers, a drop in visitor numbers at sanitary showrooms and a corresponding decline in demand.
Geberit provides its customers – notably plumbers and sanitary engineers – with a wide, proven range of training courses. In the reporting year, some 48,000 professionals were provided with education and further training on products, tools, software tools and installation skills at 30 Geberit Information Centres in Europe and overseas. This means that the number of participants recorded is above the pre-pandemic level. At the same time, local events and counter days were organised in numerous markets – often together with wholesalers – to train craftsmen on new products. More than 75,000 customers took part in such events. Web-based seminars and training courses now occupy a firm and important place in Geberit’s training offer. 19,000 people took part in the reporting year.
In Geberit’s three-stage business model, wholesalers play a key role. Wholesalers offer plumbers the entire range of products across the various product categories in the field of sanitary technology and heating applications. They ensure product availability through warehousing and a nationwide network of pick-up points as well as the logistics to plumbing companies and construction sites. Furthermore, in many countries wholesalers have showrooms where they can advise end users on their product selection.
For customers with a focus on sustainability, Geberit can also demonstrate its sustainability performance via its EcoVadis rating. EcoVadis awarded Geberit the platinum rating for its sustainability management for the third year running in 2022. It is the highest possible rating awarded following the annual evaluation by EcoVadis. Geberit thus finds itself again in the top one percent of companies rated by EcoVadis. EcoVadis is one of the world’s largest providers of business sustainability ratings and has created a global network of over 100,000 companies in around 175 countries. The comprehensive analysis takes into account 21 criteria in the areas Environment, Labour and Human Rights, Ethics and Sustainable Procurement, and contributes towards ensuring transparency in sustainability performance of the companies. The top rating again shows both customers and suppliers that Geberit has a comprehensive, systematic sustainability management in place.
For further information on customer relations, see Business Report > Business and financial review > Financial Year 2022 > Customers.