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On the road with Sanitas Troesch

Jeannette Bachmayr still loads her truck the old-fashioned way, using a pallet truck and a sack trolley, but there are other tasks where she can use digital tools to speed up her work in a modern way. We accompanied the Sanitas Troesch employee on her early-morning deliveries in Central Switzerland.

Uta Engelmann

March 29, 2023 . 4 minutes read

Jeannette reaches for the coffee she’s just grabbed from a vending machine. She needs to be wide awake even at five o’clock in the morning. The truck must be loaded carefully to make sure that the goods don’t move around, the weight distribution doesn’t pose a safety risk, and the bathtubs and kitchen cabinets can be unloaded in the correct order when they arrive at their intended destinations. «Loading is like playing Tetris,» says Jeannette as she scrunches up her paper cup and closes the roller door on the loading ramp.

We set off from the Sanitas Troesch regional warehouse in Dättwil and head out into Central Switzerland. The early morning sun glistens on the highway as it rises over the crest of the Rigi mountain massif. The speakers in the truck are playing country music. Jeannette has connected her mobile phone to the sound system. «Internet radio just sounds better,» she says.

On the road again: Today’s route will take us into the sunny climes of Central Switzerland.  

The first stop of the day will be at a plumbing business in Kägiswil in Obwalden. Jeannette opens the back of the truck, climbs onto the tail lift and slides the pallet truck under the pallet of washbasins. She gets the recipient to confirm that the delivery has been made successfully by digitally signing her tablet.

«We used to just send our drivers out on the road with their goods and at some point they’d return with an empty truck»
Hans-Peter Birneder, IT manager at Sanitas Troesch

«We used to just send our drivers out with their goods and at some point they’d return with an empty truck,» Hans-Peter Birneder, IT manager at Sanitas Troesch, told me in a preliminary chat. Nowadays, you always know where every truck is at any given time. Routes are planned and orders are processed directly on the tablet. All the digital options make it much easier for the traditional Swiss company to carry out its processes. «If a customer suddenly contacts us and wants to return their goods, we can immediately add an extra stop for a driver who happens to be nearby, and the planned route on the driver’s device will be adjusted to incorporate it.»

Mobile connection: Jeannette chats to the logistics department.

The next stop is a construction site in Sarnen. Jeannette gets instructions on her mobile telling her exactly where to leave the bathtubs. There’s nobody around on site to acknowledge receipt of the goods. Jeannette takes photos of the delivery using her tablet. «Our truck drivers also use the devices to document the delivery of the goods,» says Birneder. The images are automatically transferred to the system. «This allows us to inform customers when and where the order has been left and to prove it was delivered in good condition.»


Enterprise Mobility Management: centralized device management for mobile working

Sanitas Troesch manages the many hundreds of tablets, notebooks and smartphones centrally via an online platform from Sunrise. Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) creates the very best conditions for all employees to be able to work securely and productively from any location. Configurations, updates, app provisioning or data deletion – for example, if a device is lost – can be arranged quickly and easily via remote access, and company data is securely protected at all times.

For services like these to be available even in remote areas and for the requisite digital tools to work without a hitch, there needs to be flawless mobile reception. «We don’t just drive up and down the highways and around the bigger cities. We can actually go to any building site in any location,» says Birneder. And it’s essential to be able to work from anywhere, not just for delivery staff, but also for those in the field.

Always by her side: Jeannette uses her tablet to receive and acknowledge all orders. 

Lake Sarnen is gleaming ahead of us. It’s not even eight o’clock yet. Time for a coffee break. We’ll use this opportunity to take a few photos. «It’s a good job I actually washed the truck yesterday,» says Jeannette, laughing into the camera. The 48-year-old has been working for Sanitas Troesch for 17 years. She likes the regular working hours. It's a privilege she could only dream of in her office job with her previous employer. She likes the precise way that her daily schedule is timed. Punctuality is a key value for Sanitas Troesch. «We’re able to deliver around eighty percent of orders within thirty minutes of the scheduled time,» says Birneder proudly.

Despite all the digital tools, delivering goods is still a physical job.

Sometimes reality gets in the way of the drivers’ best-laid plans, though. Every now and then, Jeannette is unable to deliver at the specified time. «Sometimes there’s a mobile crane in the way, sometimes there are unexpected traffic jams,» she says. When this happens, she tells the scheduling department and they then notify the customers at each destination that the timetable has been delayed. Punctuality is good, communication is essential.

«Ok Google, give me a route to Zingelweg 5 in Giswil.» The engine kicks back into life with a gentle jolt. Jeannette drives the truck back to the main road. One last delivery, and then it’ll be time for us to bid her farewell. There are about ten more stops left on her schedule today. Then she’ll head back to the depot.

Although Sanitas Troesch uses plenty of advanced technology out on the road, digitization is just one of many tools. «Our bathtubs are still analog and just need filling with water,» jokes Birneder. The key to the success of Sanitas Troesch is managing to strike the right balance between modern tools and traditional services – and ultimately it’s people like Jeannette Bachmayr who are truly driving the company forward.


Everything under control – with the Sunrise Business Portal

Thanks to the free Sunrise Business Portal (SBP), Sanitas Troesch can manage all its services and products independently. SBP gives companies an overview of all current mobile, Internet and calling subscriptions and provides a pleasant and efficient digital end-to-end user experience and maximum flexibility because it’s so easy to use.

Sanitas Troesch as a company

Founded in 1911 in Bern, Sanitas Troesch AG is now Switzerland's market leader for bathrooms and kitchens. Anyone planning to build a house, renovate or refurbish a property will find the traditional company offers what they want. Sanitas Troesch provides advice to installers, builders, investors, architects, planners and end customers. With 22 showrooms, Sanitas Troesch presents furnishing examples and solutions for bathrooms and kitchens. Plumbers have access to a range of over 5,000 products in 35 stores. The company has been part of the globally active Saint-Gobain Group since 2005.

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