Chief Digital Officer
ERIKS is the technical partner of the manufacturing world. In nearly 25 countries, the company provides specialist industrial services, advice and products. All with one goal: Making its customers, and thereby global industries, work better. Central to ERIKS’ overall strategy is a digital transformation, which started in 2018 and for which the company is now looking to hire a strategically strong and inspirational Chief Digital Officer.
ERIKS: 80 Years of industry improvement
80 years ago, ERIKS started as a supplier to the dairy industry in the Netherlands, providing mechanical components and tools that helped dairy plants increase efficiency. Over the course of eight decades the company kept innovating, evolving, and expanding. Through a relentless focus on technology and service, it became a key sparring partner and service provider for a range of industries. Among its clients are high tech manufacturers and food companies (such as ASML and Heineken), energy industry players (from windmill operators to power plants), motorized vehicle manufacturers (making cars, ships, or airplanes), construction firms, medicine production businesses and more.
For these clients, ERIKS provides a wide range of technical products (for instance hoses and valves), co-engineering services, customization solutions, and related services. Technical teams are at customers’ beck and call for sophisticated services and advice – from design to smart maintenance. And on the local web shops, customers can easily order tools or component parts.
“Every company is tech-based these days, but with us the relevance of that is more tangible than anywhere else. We provide products and knowhow in a way that has a direct impact on the economy. In each household you’ll find at least one item of which the production was improved with help from ERIKS.” – Floris Jan Cuypers, COO at ERIKS
Dutch DNA, global culture
With its expansion into 23 countries and many different industries, ERIKS became a truly diverse and inclusive organization. It attracts talent and experts from across the globe. And while its headquarters and roots are in the Netherlands, its culture, client relationships, and vision are truly international.
The company is owned by SHV, a family-owned Dutch group with a portfolio of seven companies that together employ nearly 60.000 people worldwide. The culture at both SHV and ERIKS is built on integrity, entrepreneurship, and a core value of investing in people. With its 6.500 employees and nearly 2 billion euros revenue, ERIKS is an established corporate – yet one with the entrepreneurial drive and willingness to invest that is often found at younger, smaller, PE-backed businesses.
ERIKS now finds itself in a highly exciting phase: that of a company-wide digital transformation. The potential of digital technology for ERIKS is hard to overstate. Its reach includes everything from easy business workflows to direct commercial purposes. Within that last category, a distinction can be made between the obvious use for digital technology in the ERIKS ecommerce channels, and an important strategic step toward new innovations and service propositions that are partially or fully digital – ultimately resulting in a channel shift and digital revenue and profitability growth. Examples include the proposition of Smart Asset Management (IoT) or ‘ERIKS Wiki’, a knowledge mining data base for employees and customers.
ERIKS approach to digitization has been unique and stellar. Instead of running the transformation internally, ERIKS founded a new company – ZAMRO – and tasked it with the mission of challenging ERIKS on its digital strategy. When ZAMRO was finally brought under the wings of ERIKS in 2018, it consisted of 80 top notch developers and digital and industry experts. What was once the core of ZAMRO, combined with additional strong CRM and backend process teams, is now the ERIKS Digital Office. This is where the Chief Digital Officer comes in.
Vacancy: Chief Digital Officer
The Chief Digital Officer will be in charge of the 150 FTE that currently form the Digital Office,with its three branches Product Portfolio & Countries, IT & DevOps, and Analytics & Digital Marketing. The CDO will have a pivotal role in not only managing but also strategizing the next phase of the digital transformation, with a sharp eye for both commercial success in countries and change management. Thus, this senior executive role includes responsibilities in the realms of people leadership, technical leadership, strategic leadership and business leadership. The CDO reports directly to the board – CEO, CFO, COO, and CHRO – and is part of ERIKS’ executive leadership. The board members have a relatively strong digital background, and expects the CDO to take a seat at the table and actively challenge them on the focus and speed of digital strategy and effective business transformation.
The CDO hits the ground running by quickly understanding all processes involved. They grasp the full digital portfolio; identify opportunities to improve and add to this; and safeguard focus to maximize impact. The CDO then also applies the necessary stakeholder management and influencing behavior to help countries and teams execute on this roadmap. Although they have the technical knowledge to understand and lead a large-scale digitization at a B2B company, the CDO has at least as much business sense as tech expertise. Importantly, the CDO is also an inspiring people leader, who takes it upon themself to build and expand capabilities within the Digital Office and the countries – including building and shaping their own team.
This role is a highly exciting challenge for a tech and business leader with at least 12 years’ experience, who has proven to be a strategic heavyweight and an inspiring people manager. The role of CDO at ERIKS is the ideal stepping stone toward a senior board function at a large corporate. With a strong focus on impact; a diverse and international team; and the full executive board as their sparring partner, the CDO will play a pivotal role in ERIKS’ success over the coming years.