Scania: Integration of a global marketing- and communication organisation

Scania: Integration of a global marketing- and communication organisation

2021-01-15

With close to 50,000 employees worldwide and a turnover of 13.5 billion Euros, Scania is Sweden’s 7th largest company. Hundreds of local market offices and thousands of resellers and service workshops all over the world sell Scania trucks and communicate to end customers. This puts a demanding task on Scania’s global communication department – one of Sweden’s largest.

In 2019, management of Scania chose to merge a number of centrally located communication- and marketing functions with global responsibilities into one large unit.

– It was a good idea to combine the functions, but as we had not really decided how to work together we experienced problems, says Mikael Person, Senior advisor at Scania Communications.

In general, the challenge with B2B communication is that you very often do not communicate directly with the end customer. This increases the pressure and demand put on centrally produced communication.

– The role of our global function is to support all the people responsible for communication in the various markets. But many of these markets are very different and local needs can vary a lot, continues Mikael.

Emelie Wintzell at Kapero has observed the same working with other clients: – There is often a resistance to activate centrally created marketing material. Unfortunately, more than often there is a perception that global material doesn’t work in your own specific market. Instead, local communication material is being produced. This leads both to unnecessary costs and to difficulties to keep the overall focus in the corporate branding work stretching across countries.

Events and trade shows are important tools to reach Scania’s target groups and represent a large share of the company’s communication work. There is a large inhouse content department that produces editorial content, films and images. Mikael describes an organisation where one group could be responsible for a channel and at the same time would drive overall communication projects. This set-up created problems.

Mikael explains: – We had project leaders leading other project leaders and we weren’t able to make the best use of our channels. Together with Kapero we crafted a new model where we could merge and consolidate communication projects across channels. Based on a common strategy and planning, an organisation was created embracing the processes for communication and marketing respectively.

Before the merger of the global communication function, many units had their own co-operations with suppliers  and agencies. The resulting situation after the merger was that there were too many agencies. And of those, many claimed to be central and key in creating Scania’s communication strategy.

– We demanded of a solution to be connected to our new processes and organisational structure. It also had to include clear principles of how to cut down the number of suppliers over time and clarify responsibilities. In total, the changes lead to substantial cost savings. However, what our top management appreciates the most, is that we have created a closer contact with our local markets and that we now are prepared to meet our future needs with a modern set-up of our communication department, concludes Mikael Person, Senior advisor at Scania Communications.