The Company regularly holds co-ordination councils jointly with its customers, which are a vital for its customer relations. In 2017, Metalloinvest held co-ordination councils with JSC OMK, PJSC TMK, PJSC ChelPipe, JSC RZD, and PJC KAMAZ, among others. Current matters of cooperation, review of the results of past periods and future plans are discussed at the meetings. Coordination councils also review the quality of products supplied to Metalloinvest customers, research results, and customer complaints (if any), as well as discuss customer feedback.
Metalloinvest takes various steps to receive feedback from its customers:
- Annual surveys assessing customer satisfaction with the service and product quality. The surveys comply with the Quality Management System requirements of ISO: 9001;16949
- On-site customer interviews: conducting interviews with employees from various enterprises directly dealing with Metalloinvest products. The survey and interview results are essential for exploring and analysing processes in the markets in which the Company’s customers operate, as well as trends in providing services and in innovative changes in SBQ product ranges. The analysis aids Metalloinvest in adjusting its operating and sales policies
In 2017, the Company also made efforts to classify information on production and business processes required for the development of electronic document management and CRM applications, which is scheduled for commencement in 2018.
Metalloinvest specialists boost customer centricity through the following:
- Arranging regular site visits for consumers of the Company’s
products, visiting customer manufacturing facilities, and
discussing product quality, logistics, and business matters
with customers both in person and via telephone. Over 600
face-to-face meetings with counterparties were held in 2017.
In particular, visits to Lebedinsky GOK’s production sites
were arranged for OTEKO, PJSC TMK, JSC Volzhsky Pipe
Plant, and foreign partners – FLS (Switzerland), Mitsui &
Co. Ltd and KOBE Steel Ltd (Japan), Global Steel Wire
and Comsimet (Spain), Tosyali Holding (Turkey), KLASCO
(Lithuania), GSG (Indonesia), Samsung C&T (Republic of
Korea), and others.
To observe the manufacturing processes at Ural Steel, the premises were visited by JSC VSW, PJSC ChelPipe, CJSC Voronezhstalmost, LLC Tyumenstalmost, and LLC Expatel; OEMK’s production facilities were visited by PJSC AVTOVAZ and PJSC Hydrosila.
Metalloinvest also visits production facilities of the Company’s customers. Metalloinvest Management Company, OJSC Management Company EPK and OEMK together with Amsted Rail and Brenco visited Brenco’s production site in Petersburg, USA. The main purpose of the visit was to discuss the expansion of the supplied bearing grade steels range and agree restarting Amsted Rail’s approved supplier procedure for OEMK’s 8720 grade rolled steels of ≤ 120 mm. The visitors had a tour of the Brenco plant to observe the manufacturing process, and later discussed a prospective partnership in the current market environment.
- Together with its customers, Metalloinvest regularly arranges joint visits to shipping and loading ports to monitor product quality and compliance with handling requirements. In 2017, employees of Lebedinsky GOK inspected cargos at the ports of Klaipeda and Novorossiysk
- Arranging the logistics of shipments by practically all means of transport – motor, railway, and maritime (for sea delivery the Company uses vessels with a capacity of 3,000 to 50,000 tonnes) –to meet consumer demands. Multimodal shipments could also be arranged upon the customer’s request
- Attending industry conferences and exhibitions. In autumn
2017, the Company participated in the international
exhibition Metal Expo 2017, including in the roundtable
discussion titled, “Current Trends of Rolled Steels Use in
Bridge Construction”. Metalloinvest also attended NEVA
2017, held in Saint Petersburg, the 14th international
exhibition of shipbuilding, navigation, port operation, and
on- and off-shore development. The main objective of
attending the event was identifying new potential customers
for Ural Steel’s rolled steel
Metalloinvest participated in an extended field meeting of the Rail Car Builders Association – the union of rolling stock manufacturers and users, and the Rail Car Building Subcommittee of Non-Commercial Partnership Union of Industries of Railway Equipment at the production facilities of LLC Ural Spring Plant (Beloretsk) in November 2017. Participants of the Conference of Spring Manufacturers for the Railway Industry shared their opinions on the quality and durability of rail car parts and discussed further partnership options for railway equipment and steel manufacturers. Metalloinvest also had an introductory tour of the state-of-the-art spring plant . Following the meeting, OEMK agreed with Ural Spring Plant to increase order volumes through delivering pilot batches of rolled products for manufacturing ofnew types of springs, with subsequent increase of the order to commercial batches.
Metalloinvest is a member of the International Iron Metallics Association (IIMA) and has a seat on the Association’s Board of Directors. The Association is comprised of companies specialising in the manufacturing and use of metal resources for steelmaking and casting, and conducts research, develops analytics, and is a major platform for networking and interaction between steel producers and consumers. The Association holds biannual conferences to discuss the most important matters relating to the industry development and the market environment.