Transforming the way in which a company goes about its business is quite a leap when its part of an industry that relies on precision engineering and specialised skills. But when Utkarsh Munot followed in his father’s footsteps and was appointed Executive Director in 2006, CEO in 2016, then Managing Director in 2019, he knew ZF Steering Gear (India), also known as ZF India, needed to make drastic changes or face the inevitable loss of its market leadership.
Utkarsh realised the business had to take on a new wave of technology and find people who could integrate it into the company’s production and management processes. No easy task. “ZF India has a very strong base along with some old employees who had taught me a lot of things and processes,” Utkarsh says. “But with the change that I foresaw, I had to get rid of a lot of old handwritten processes and practices. We integrated our existing team with new industry experts and a few freshmen from college to combine processes in an innovative yet sustainable way. The change fortunately was welcomed and appreciated by the team that has been with us since my father had the reins of the company.”
With the combination of experience and new skills came a renaissance in technology as Utkarsh transitioned ZF India to a digital platform. It was a brave move in an industry, and a company, deeply reliant on traditional manual workplace practices. “As India was moving towards digitalisation, we were among the first few in our auto component sector to have started the process of converting to a digital future,” he says. “All the machinery parameters, data collection and quality checks were automatically updated from manually writing them all down, saving time and adding traceability for the customers to ascertain quality.”
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