Customers

Customer relationships

With its gases and services, Linde is a partner to companies in virtually all industry sectors. We supply our products and services to more than two million customers worldwide. A third of the revenue of our Gases Division is derived from around 500 major customers. These customers are the focus of our key customer management. We work constantly to ensure that we deliver customer satisfaction and continue to increase customer loyalty. Experts in our key customer management teams in all three operating segments exchange views about customer satisfaction initiatives within the Group, identify success factors and communicate them to other business units.

Customer segmentation within the Gases Division

Food & beverages

Chemistry & energy

Metallurgy & glass

Manu­facturing industry

Electronics

Healthcare

Others

Aquaculture & Water Treatment

Energy

Glass & Fibre Optics

Aerospace

Solar

Hospital Care

Education & Research

Beverages

Fine & Petro­chemistry

Heat Treatment

Automotive

Semi­conductor

Homecare

Retail

Food

Pharma

Non-ferrous

Heavy Construction & Machinery

Chip Packaging

Gas Therapies

Distributors

 

Other Chemistry

Steel

Light Metal Fab. & Prod.

 

Care Concepts

 

 

 

Other Metallurgy & Glass

Other manu­facturing

 

 

 

In 2015, we expanded and extended two key initiatives to optimise our customer focus, with a particular emphasis on optimising order processing in all customer segments. We conducted for the second time a detailed survey of our customers in the 12 countries in which our Gases Division generates the most revenue. In future this survey should take place every 18 months. Based on the findings from the 2015 survey, we launched more than 120 additional projects across all our business units during the year. These projects focused on areas such as customer enquiries, invoices and delivery information. We were able to complete over half these projects successfully during the reporting year.

In the second major initiative we enable customers to rate Linde immediately after the completion of a transaction: for example, following a delivery or once the customer has received the invoice. The aim is to ensure that every customer complaint receives a prompt and appropriate response and that we provide systematic solutions to any potential problems. Customers will also receive information from us about the steps we are taking to avoid any recurrence of the event which provoked the complaint. We are already actively using customer feedback to improve our products and processes in all regions. By the end of 2016, we are planning to include the 29 countries which generate the most revenue in the programme. We also organise events for our customers, so that we can gain a better understanding of their needs. In the UK and Ireland, for example, four events during the reporting year were attended by more than 70 customers.

In 2015, our Group again received recognition from a number of different business partners. In the United States, we were given a Preferred Quality Supplier award by a major customer in the electronics industry. In China, we were awarded the status of Excellent Supplier by a customer in the telecommunications industry in recognition of our delivery reliability, quality and customer focus. For the sixth time in succession, Linde Gas Deutschland received an award from TÜV Saarland for service and customer satisfaction. More than 85 percent of TÜV customers questioned declared that they were satisfied or very satisfied with the service provided by Linde.