THEOPRAX / Expert Talk: Agile Product Development at TGW Mechanics GmbH

Students of the degree programs AMM, IPM and MEWI have the opportunity to get insights into special topics from experts of different companies within the event series ‘Theoprax at Audimax’. At June 9th, 2022 Dr. Alfred Sadlauer – Head of Storage Technology at TGW Mechanics GmbH – gave profound insights into the implementation process of the TGW´s agile development process.

TGW is a world leading system integrator for highly automated, efficient and future-proof fulfillment centers. The foundation-owned company currently has more than 4,000 employees on three continents and generated a revenue of 813 million euros in the 2020/21 fiscal year. Innovations and the associated product development are thus essential to further expanding the company's leading competitive position.

In this context, Dr. Sadlauer sensitized the present students at the beginning of his presentation to the necessity of transforming classic development processes to agile approaches. He then provided insight into the transformation process at TGW which lasted a total of three years at TGW. Essentially, three areas are primarily affected in such a process. The corporate culture must enable agile approaches, that means there must be a pronounced feedback culture and the development of employees must have top priority. With regard to the process dimension, it must be said that agile procedure models, such as SCRUM, must be integrated into established stage-gate models in a synergetic manner. And, of course, the corporate structure must also be adapted accordingly and TGW turned to a product-line oriented structure of the company.

At the end of the event, students took the opportunity for an in-depth discussion with the speaker. The entire faculty of the AMM, IPM and MEWI study programs would like to thank Dr. Sadlauer for these great insights into a highly topical subject that is currently occupying numerous companies and will occupy them even more in the future!

Dr. Alfred Sadlauer (copyright FH Wels)