2022 Customer Awards: Bosch Rexroth AG - Best-in-Class: Community

2022 Customer Awards: Bosch Rexroth AG - Best-in-Class: Community


Company: Bosch Rexroth AG

Company background: As one of the world’s leading suppliers of drive and control technologies, Bosch Rexroth ensures efficient, powerful and safe movement in machines and systems of any size. The company bundles global application experience in the market segments of Mobile Applications, Machinery Applications and Engineering, and Factory Automation. With its intelligent components, customized system solutions and services, Bosch Rexroth is creating the necessary environment for fully connected applications. Bosch Rexroth offers its customers hydraulics, electric drive and control technology, gear technology and linear motion and assembly technology, including software and interfaces to the Internet of Things.

Contact: Thorsten Schulz, Katja Balliett (Bosch Rexroth AG) /// Sebastian Weiss (Bosch.IO)

Title: Community Product Owner, Community Administrator /// Senior Expert Digital Business

Related URLs: https://developer.community.boschrexroth.com

Kudos Category: Best-in-Class: Community

1. Describe the organization's objectives in launching a community. What is the use-case and purpose of your community? Do you use your community for support, enablement and learning, marketing awareness, customer success, driving sales, product innovation, etc.? Has the community charter evolved in any way since launch?

ctrlX AUTOMATION CommunityctrlX AUTOMATION Community

The ctrlX AUTOMATION Community offers developers the opportunity to discuss and exchange about the ctrlX AUTOMATION solution by Bosch Rexroth.  

Launched in 2019, the automation solution ctrlX AUTOMATION is constantly expanding its open ecosystem. ctrlX AUTOMATION surmounts the classic boundaries between machine controls, the IT world and the Internet of Things. With a Linux real-time operating system, consistently open standards, app programming technology, web-based engineering and a comprehensive IoT connection, ctrlX AUTOMATION reduces components and engineering costs by 30 to 50%. 

A core element of this ecosystem is the ctrlX AUTOMATION Community, launched in September 2020. Users can learn how to develop and implement projects. Special feature is the ctrlX Store - directly embedded within the community - offering apps and services from Bosch Rexroth as well as third party apps from ctrlX World partners. The community is the central developer support channel with its different product line forums. It offers an extensive collection of how-to articles featured with ready-to-use examples. The reference to GitHub and technical product documentation makes up the entire developer journey. 

2. Tell us about how you are using your community and how you made it happen. Did you get executive/business/stakeholder buy-in? What was your process to gain this buy-in? How have you achieved cross functional support, added stake-holders and increased organizational adoption?

The ctrlX AUTOMATION Community is part of our daily business. All teams from the application support, development and product management take care of our users and their questions. We always have a pair of two moderators for each product line forum. Therefore, the application support focuses more on the technical questions whereas the product management works on the topics related to new functions and timelines.  
For all project stakeholders it was clear from the beginning that we want to leave the legacy support channels like email, phone calls, support meetings and move to a modern and open community platform. 

ctrlX Store embedded in the communityctrlX Store embedded in the community

The special feature of the Community is the ctrlX Store with apps from Bosch Rexroth and the ctrlX World partners. The store builds on the blog module enriched by ecommerce components “Buy a license” and “Download an app”.  

Ecommerce components included in a blog articleEcommerce components included in a blog article

The partners are also supporting their own apps within a dedicated forum area. 

ctrlX World partner forum area.ctrlX World partner forum area.

What’s next? Currently the Khoros Group Hub module is in an internal test phase. With Groups we are going to focus the public community to upcoming topics before becoming mainstream and achieving the next level of individual support for our ctrlX World partners, OEMs and special teams.  

Groups - WidgetGroups - Widget

3. What were the results? Tell us how it impacted your customer experience or the outcomes you seek as a business. Please include metrics if possible.

Started as a developer community it is much more today. The community is supporting our sales teams worldwide. Showing apps in the ctrlX Store together with related how-to articles and product line support forums – everything combined in one online community – is providing more sales power than a slide show presentation. 
We could more than double the number of visits in the first half of 2022 compared to 2021.  

Community visits 2021 vs 2022 YTDCommunity visits 2021 vs 2022 YTD

The last important question: Do we save money? Yes of course, we do. 

It’s clear that we must invest into the community in terms of human resources and infrastructure but on the other side we’re saving more money by deflecting support requests from the more expensive channels, like emails, calls and support meetings.  

ctrlX AUTOMATION Community on YouTube