Customer benefits underpin all of our decision-making. From product development through manufacturing, sales, service, and support, we constantly seek to provide new value that puts customers first.
Today’s socio-economic environment is vastly different from what it used to be and the transformation process continues, driven by increased globalization, growth of emerging economies and a wider embrace of network technologies. Customers’ business environments and needs are changing, with management focusing on everything from transforming workflows and cutting the total costs of ownership to ensuring compliance with laws and ordinances.
That said, it is not always clear what customers want. We seek to stay ahead of customers in uncovering needs that they have yet to notice. We have to look beyond what they tell us to identify what they truly want.
The Ricoh Group looks beyond conventional offices in expanding the value it offers to various industries and worksites. We will leverage the power of One Global Ricoh to meet customer expectations.
Composition of workforce by region
In sales and services, we have built a global network stretching across some 200 countries and regions and maintain a four-point regional headquarters structure—Japan, the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific. In addition, we constantly work to expand the service business and strengthen the structure through M&As while taking steps to foster local harmony and consistency in our global strategies.
To ensure that we are able to provide leading-edge technologies to customers around the world, we have set up R&D hubs in Japan, the United States, China and India, and pursue development of technologies attuned to local market characteristics and globally strategic technologies.
In delivering products and services to customers, we utilize four global production hubs and maintain an optimum production structure emphasizing the most favorable location for maximum efficiency. This approach combines two production formats: “intensive production,” which outputs core modules common to many products as economically and efficiently as possible, and “local production for local consumption,” which swiftly addresses the needs of customers close to the point of production.
Meanwhile, we have worked to achieve a supply chain that remains uninterrupted even in a disaster or other emergency situations so that customers will never have to halt operations. Within the Ricoh Group, we ask suppliers to reinforce business continuity capabilities through redundant production bases and parts procurement channels and larger material and component inventories, and we encourage them to be socially responsible and take a rigorous stance on CSR procurement and issues of child labor and conflict minerals.
These efforts underpin our commitment to customer satisfaction through supply chain management implemented from a customer perspective while simultaneously pursuing profit opportunities.
Structure-strengthening M&As (May 2015–July 2017)
|2015||May||Ridgian Limited (United Kingdom)|
|June||Graycon Group Inc. (Canada)|
|July||NASSION Systems (Malaysia)
Capa 4 (Mexico)
Impromat CZ spol. s.r.o. (Czech Republic)
Impromat Slov spol.s.r.o. (Slovakia)
|December||Upfront SPRL (Belgium)|
|2016||January||AnaJet LLC. (United States)|
|June||Eye-Fi Inc. (United States)|
|2017||January||Avanti Computer Systems Limited (Canada)|
|July||Techno Trends, S.L. (Spain)|
The Ricoh Group believes it is important to provide products and services that customers can use with confidence and that deliver a sense of value that exceeds expectations. This ideal is captured in the RICOH Quality declarations with the words “consistently delight and inspire our customers,” and we strive to ensure quality, particularly the aspects of safety and reliability.
Standards/Frameworks to ensure confidence and safety
Sales companies in each country have opportunities for direct contact with customers. It is these companies which operate and maintain customer relationship management (CRM) databases and track customer equipment information and maintenance histories. Customer contact sites use CRM databases, repeatedly survey and analyze needs, pinpoint issues, and suggest products and solutions based on projected needs. Our support continues after delivery, as well, through the 24-hour @Remote on-site maintenance and remote monitoring system, which executes automatic diagnostics and enables quick servicing for worry-free equipment use with little to no downtime for customers. With @Remote, we can verify the operating status of equipment and provide continuous improvements and fine-tuned suggestions based on captured status data, which contributes to greater management efficiency at customer sites.
In addition, we identify ways to make our products better by analyzing customer satisfaction surveys, undertaking improvements to increase user-friendliness and reflecting our findings in manufacturing.
Systems for collecting and applying customer feedback
We conduct technology advisory conferences as vehicles for creating new value with customers. CTOs, VPs, and IT Directors from businesses partners attend the conference, where participants share information and common issues through group discussions. We visualize the potential needs of customers and endeavor to reflect them in future products and services.
Representatives from 31 of Ricoh’s Fortune Global 500 Major and International Account customers participated in the 11th European Technology Advisory Conference (eTAC) in Telford, Shropshire, in June 2017. Also attending were delegates from Ricoh operating companies around Europe and technology specialists from Canada, China, and Japan. We updated customers on our direction and strategy, industrial technologies and applications, the ITS future portfolio and strategy, and explained how our innovative technologies and services enable people to work smarter.
Discussions also encompassed how Cyber-Physical systems could reduce warehouse inspection costs and how Ricoh could help firms to improve and cleanse customer-related data in light of EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will take effect on May 25, 2018. Another focus was on using a combination of communication services and collaborative platforms, SI-Cloud and Smart apps, and Ricoh Interactive White Boards with artificial intelligence-linked conference support solutions. Discussion extended to challenges faced by today’s office worker and the technologies and new processes that Ricoh could deliver.
Throughout the event, customers had opportunities to familiarize themselves with multi-projector systems demonstrations, the 360° THETA S camera, technology integrated into the RICOH Unified Communication System, the RICOH R Development Kit, which can provide 24-hour spherical live streaming, and other new offerings. Customers gained insights into the Customer Experience Centre, the RICOH Rapid Fab 3D experience area, and other facilities.
The Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) reached 85% and 95% of the customer attendees said they’d like to participate again next year.
Virgin Money plc deployed a RICOH Interactive Whiteboard (IWB) solution to more effectively track, record, and manage IT incidents and share information faster and more efficiently.
Overcoming the complexity and inefficiency of conventional information management
Managed Print Services customer Virgin Money used to manually record IT incidents. It maintains a team that manages such incidents for all of Virgin Money’s head office, back office and retail branch operations. This includes large computer systems handling banking and customer information, corporate networks and staff PCs, through to iPads used in branches to help customers. The team would manually record IT events and incidents on display panels. It would then record details of each incident by photographing the panels. As the bank’s operations expanded, this method of incident management became complicated and inefficient. Since several IT teams are present at different locations, sharing incident information was complicated.
Deploying interactive whiteboard to streamline information management, sharing, and recording
Asked to review the problem, Ricoh looked at how Virgin Money operated incident management and then suggested using IWBs to share information and help streamline operations. The bank decided to use a solution comprising two units of IWB that serve and link Virgin Money’s IT incident teams in Gosforth and Norwich. With IWBs in place, electronic records of incident information replace paper and ink. Each incident starts with a handwritten problem statement, but then additional information, such as requirements and actions taken, is added to the case. Documents associated with an incident can be pulled up electronically, viewed on IWB and then attached to the incident. When closed, the incident and all associated information and documentation is saved as a single incident PDF.
Making a positive compliance impact
The Ricoh solution has made a tangible difference to the way Virgin Money handles IT incidents by making information easier to manage, share and archive. It also helps the bank meet compliance regulations. The team leader for IT Incident & Problem Management at Virgin Money says that, “Ricoh’s IWB solution is extremely useful and now forms an integral part of Virgin Money’s IT incident management process. One benefit is the improvement in the way we collaborate and share knowledge and information between the Gosforth and Norwich teams, in real time. But the biggest benefit is being able to collate and record information efficiently and then create an accurate, reliable audit trail of incident management.” The PDF record of an incident can be linked to relevant incident information in the bank’s service management application and archived. He adds that, “Time is an important factor in managing any incident, and the clarity and speed that the Ricoh whiteboards introduce make a big difference.”
About Virgin Money
Part of the Virgin Group, Virgin Money is a UK-based retail bank that provides residential mortgages, savings, current accounts and credit cards, as well as such complementary financial products as investments and insurance. Its 75 Virgin Money Stores across the nation serve four million customers.