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What happened in 2021 at Onetrail and what will 2022 have in store?

We end the year 2021 with some reflections, future thoughts and personal ambitions. Six Onetrail colleagues from different departments look back and ahead.

Richard Vriezekolk, International Sales and Account Manager

“B2B and B2C are blending together”

“2021 was in my experience the year in which B2B and B2C – traditionally opposing concepts – started to blend significantly. In the B2B world, speed or extensive information delivery were not major requirements, whereas in B2C same day delivery is becoming the new normal. What we see now is that B2B customers also expect fast delivery and as much information on their order as possible. Customer expectations are rising also in the B2B arena, and it will be key for suppliers to address this trend.”

“I am convinced this trend will continue in 2022. One of the challenges for B2B suppliers will be to streamline their processes as much as possible. This will enable them to meet customer expectations without the need of extensive investments in resources. The retail world is changing rapidly. Look at Dyson, where consumers can order directly form the manufacturer. You can’t keep on thinking this will pass and stay on your own private island. We look forward helping our customers with all these challenges in the year to come with even more tools and by listening closely to their needs.”

Cor Zijlstra, CTO & Product Manager

“A transparent supply chain will remain key”

“For many of our customers, shortages in the supply chain led to real problems last year. There was a shortage of everything, varying from microchips to lumber for construction. Therefore, customers started to look for alternatives. Whenever they found these alternatives, they had to act quickly, because demand was high, and everyone was looking around.”

“Fortunately, we were able to support our customers with the Product Now service which allows for real-time insight in stock of suppliers, as well as quick reservations and ordering. This feature was the result of our customer panel initiative where we invite customers to come up with ideas for innovations. It enables our customers to act quickly on available products and I am very happy we are able to provide this service.”

“I expect the shortage will not be easily revolved in 2022, so a transparent supply chain will remain key, for going forward. We support this transparency by increasingly offering capabilities to retrieve only the data that you need for an order in real-time. This way, an optimum supply chain can be created, providing maximum quality. We are looking forward helping our customers with these kinds of services and are committed to make their life easier, also in 2022.”

Michal Stec, Java Developer

“We want to make it easier for customers”

 “The biggest development from my perspective in 2021 is the new Product Exchange. We already have a process in place that is responsible for exchanging product data between buyers and sellers. But the current implementation has its limitations. This year we’ve started to remake the part responsible for importing product data to our database. I worked on a prototype in my so-called ‘self-development time’. At Onetrail, developers can spend 10 percent of their time on their own ideas. I used my time for this new exchange.”

“Once in production, the new feature will make it possible to onboard new sellers without writing any code. This should increase the speed with which we can add new customers. Furthermore, the new feature is more maintainable. Because we won’t be using customer-specific code, we will be able to implement new features for everyone at once. Another real benefit is the fact that we expect to be able to cut the amount of time the process of importing data takes by about 60 percent. This should let us process more data in the same amount of time and support more customers who have large numbers of products.”

“We are currently testing the process on acceptance, and I really hope to see it being used in production very soon early next year. It is another example of how we want to make it easier for our customers to do business.”

Adam Stanier, Director UK & Ireland

“What we can do is provide insight in availability”

“First of all, 2021 was the year of lockdowns and working from home. Covid-19 had a big impact on the way we work, also in the UK region. In addition, many companies had issues with their stock. And in our region, Brexit led to additional issues through new border controls and new tax rules, to just name a few. This applied mostly to buyers, whereas sellers had to deal among others with more complex ordering like CTO and BTO.”

“It is good to know that Onetrail is very well positioned to support customers with all these issues. Unfortunately, we can’t manufacture microchips. What we can do is provide insight in availability. Moreover, we will keep supporting our customers in automating different aspects of the supply chain. This will enable them to tackle a serious problem, both in our region as well as in continental Europe: staffing. Many organizations struggle to get and keep the right talent on board. By automating processes, it’s possible to increase efficiency and do more with the same group of people.”

Aaron O’Donnell, Junior Integration Consultant

“I have always loved computer stuff”

“After my education in computer science in Sligo, Ireland, I moved to continental Europe to look for a job. I moved briefly to Munich, Germany in 2021 before coming to Holland and settling in The Hague. This is where I came into contact with Onetrail. I have always loved computer stuff and have always thought data logistics is an especially interesting field. Therefore, I am very happy that I could join Onetrail last August and have the opportunity to develop my skills.”

“As a consultant I can develop both my technical knowledge and expertise and my people skills. I am an outgoing person and really like to meet people and hear their story. Looking back on 2021, this has been an exceptional year for me, in which I luckily found a job that suits me.”

“I am really looking forward to next year. Obviously, there is still much uncertainty, but I hope to be able to develop myself, meet Onetrail customers and help them be successful. I also plan to brush up my Dutch and aim to be able to converse in Dutch by the end of 2022.”

Sandra de Vries, Manager Services

“Going forward, we remain focused on customer satisfaction”

“Like 2020, 2021 was a year in which ecommerce was growing significantly due to the COVID 19 pandemic. And like in 2020, this year we noticed an enormous increase in orders for home office workspaces, but funny enough also yoga mats. Looking back, our move to remote working went very well. Working remotely is the new reality and we even succeeded in signing our first customer ever without a single face-to-face meeting. Obviously, we planned face-to-face meetings, but when this was not possible, we switched back to online and closed the deal.”

“Going forward, we remain focused on customer satisfaction. Among others, we are looking into more variety in service levels. We now have support during office hours, but more and more, customers are looking for support outside these hours. Another new feature which came up during the customer panels that we started in 2020 is proof of delivery. These are both examples of our focus on customer needs. We intend to further increase customer contact, both online and offline, in a cross-organizational way by regularly scheduling catch-up meetings with our customers to talk about what is happening in their organization. This way, we can get a clearer picture of customer needs.”