26 Apr 2022

Interview with the heroal management

Dr Max Schöne, Jürgen Peitz and Dr Ramon Knollmann on heroal’s new vision and its strategic orientation as an aluminium system supplier

The vision of heroal is “We create spaces that enrich lives”. What is the essence of this vision?

Dr Max Schöne: As human beings, we spend the better part of our lives in buildings – and as a provider of system solutions for building shells, interiors and exteriors, we have a direct impact on these living and working spaces. From a holistic point of view, therefore, our system solutions create not only building elements or curtain wall constructions, but also living spaces whose external design, indoor climate and atmosphere are very often shaped in a profound way by our products. And this is exactly where our vision comes in. As a company, we have set ourselves the overriding goal of developing solutions that improve and enrich the buildings of today and tomorrow as living and working spaces – through greater freedom of design, comfort, security and sustainability.

Who is the target of the heroal vision?

Jürgen Peitz: With our vision, we want to reach everyone who has a connection to us as a company or to our systems, as well, of course, those with plans to build today or in the future. The “we” in our vision statement is important to us. It stands not only for “We as the heroal team”, but also for the close cooperation we share with our customers, suppliers and partners. Our vision therefore also implies a value proposition for our various target groups, one which I would briefly summarise as follows: we offer fabricators an innovative, high-performance and customised range of solutions with high production and installation efficiency as well as a comprehensive service portfolio that allows us to build upon our shared success and our cooperative partnership. Architects and planners benefit from greater design freedom and planning security thanks to integrated, coordinated and sustainable system solutions as well as comprehensive consulting and planning support. We offer investors a portfolio of solutions for successful projects and builders an individual, sustainable and secure home for generations.

You identified sustainability as a component of your range of solutions. Where is this reflected?

Dr Ramon Knollmann: heroal has set itself the task of making a holistic contribution to a sustainable future. Key components of this include social responsibility, environmental pro-tection, and the development and manufacture of recyclable systems. Recently, we received silver-level Cradle-to-Cradle certification, an internationally recognised proof of the use of environmentally safe, healthy and recyclable materials in our aluminium system solutions. We also provide Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) for many of our systems. Furthermore, we have defined environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) targets. Among other things, we are aiming for carbon neutrality by 2040 and are continuously working to reduce emissions and waste. We also support charitable projects and the social commitment of our employees. Moreover, we have established a compli-ance system to consistently pursue illegal behaviour, corruption and unfair competition and to ensure compliance with heroal's ethical standards along the entire supply chain.

What influence does this vision have on your product portfolio?

Jürgen Peitz: With our portfolio, we are increasing the added value for our customers. With heroal, our customers receive everything they need for building shells, interiors and exteriors from a single source. To ensure that our systems make these living spaces more individually designable, comfortable, secure and energy-efficient, we focus on the keywords sustainability, efficiency, smartification and design in the new and further development of our products, integrating the needs of all our customer groups into the process. For example, for the Easy Mount series, we have developed systems such as the heroal D 72 PF EM door casement profile and the heroal VS Z EM sun protection system, which boast a particularly high level of processing efficiency. In the area of fire protection, heroal specialist partners can benefit from a consistent system logic. And heroal sun protection systems feature special aesthetics thanks to numerous shading options – for example, for corner areas with the heroal VS Z corner solution – as well as harmonious integration options – into the heroal C 50 curtain wall system, for example. Smartification plays an essential role in all our new and further developments. Today, heroal systems are already smart-home compatible.

heroal has also taken great strides in digitalisation in recent years. How do digital solutions help you support your customers?

Dr Max Schöne: We have either developed digital solutions ourselves or integrated solu-tions into our service range that map the entire process from planning to building operation. For example, in our online workspace, the heroal Communicator, we provide product in-formation, BIM and CAD data, as well as various planning tools that simplify site planning. Other industry tools like ATHENA or the heroal edition of LogiKal simplify calculation and construction. The ordering process is particularly efficient thanks to the heroal configurator and an EOS/EDI interface. During production, the LogiKal MES and a Data Matrix code applied to our profiles aid in paperless production. The Data Matrix code also facilitates incoming goods inspection easier, as it allows profiles to be easily identified.

How else do you support heroal specialist partners?

Jürgen Peitz: We maintain long-standing relationships with many of our partners. Our customers particularly appreciate the personal support – be it from heroal drivers, who are familiar with the conditions at the sites of our customers from making regular deliveries, or application engineers, who are always on hand to answer technical questions. In addition, we currently already offer numerous services that support customer acquisition and marketing, such as the specialist partner referral service on the website or the front door and outdoor roof configurator. In the future, we intend on expanding our range of services even further. As part of this process, we are reorganising our central sales department in order to optimise our country-specific technical consulting. We also want to work even more closely with our customers on an international level, which is why we recently opened a showroom in Prague, for example. With our heroal Academy training programme and the heroal partner+ programme, we help our partners to position themselves and their team well for the future. In addition, we offer heroal specialist partners various platforms, such as the heroal Forum, to network with each other and exchange information on product developments and ideas.