The SME Productivity & Innovation Centre (PIC) at Edge Hill University delivers impact through an intensive fully-funded programme that helps established SMEs, with the vision and potential for growth, build a coherent business model strategy to scale-up.
LC Automation case study
Technical distributor of automation, control and safety products
“Launching new products is expensive and time consuming, so we decided to work with the team at Edge Hill University to see how our processes could be improved.
The first workshop challenged our original thoughts and identified weaknesses in the project strategy. Then came the “lights on moment” as we realised certain parts of the strategy simply would not work. The following workshops focused on re-building the strategy using data driven decision-making and testing each section to produce a robust plan.
I would like to thank the team at Edge Hill for producing an informative and enjoyable programme and would recommend it to other companies.”Malcolm Chadwick, Managing Director – LC Automation
Since completing the programme:
- Clarity of new customers and their pain points.
- Identified new products and services.
- Adopted a new service model.
- Launched three new products.
- Gained 20 new customers.
- Aligned and delivered training to sales engineers.
Established in 1974, LC Automation have a long history of successful high quality product launches. In addition to offering hardware products, the technical distributors also offer technical support and training in the manufacturing sector. The wide-range of products that LC Automation supply, ultimately support the control and safety of manufacturing machinery. The company identified that a service to provide remote managed, connected cloud devices was a logical extension of their existing offer.
Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT) has transformed the manufacturing sector to improve the speed and quality of production to generate a higher Return on Investment (ROI). The introduction of big data, artificial intelligence and machine learning has opened the door for new products, services and solutions to enter the market and support the rapidly growing sector. LC Automation identified an opportunity to offer new IIOT products and services which would require new sales channels.
Malcolm Chadwick, Managing Director of LC Automation had outlined a strategy to launch the products but realised there was an opportunity to spend dedicated time in workshops focusing on the technical process and feasibility of entering new markets.
Malcolm was joined on the programme by members of the board of directors to ensure all decision-makers were part of the develop-ment of this major project. During the early stage of the facilitated workshops the team tested and evaluated their original strategy. By working with facilitators at Edge Hill, the company identified a need to further clarify their customer profile, route to market and the new service offer.
The team adapted their original strategy based on the evidence and data provided during the intense workshops. They welcomed the time away from the office to discuss and stress test their innovation and began to build a new approach to take their new products and services to market.
The structured workshops supported Malcolm and his team in developing a robust strategic solution. New products and services were identified that would provide high quality solutions to their identified customers’ pain points.
Internal processes needed to be adapted to provide a solid platform on which to offer the new products and services. Since completing the programme the business has adopted a new service model and sales engineers have received training to ensure the new process is embedded within the team. The business has launched three new products with associated servicing: Tosibox, Telenor and Red Lion and has developed an astute marketing campaign to maximise their exposure to specified customers through a targeted campaign.
As a result of introducing the new products and providing a wrap around service to accompany them, LC Automation have secured 20 new customers including major international food and beverage manufacturers.
What we offer
”The programme provides you with the opportunity to work on the business and not in it.”Professor Simon Bolton – Director, SME Productivity & Innovation Centre