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Digitalisation at Beulco
The greatest danger in times of upheaval is not the upheaval itself, it is acting with yesterday's logic.

Shaping the digital future

with agility.

In the era of the digital revolution, technology has permanently changed the foundations of the business world. Companies are faced with the challenge of redesigning their processes, services and interactions with customers and partners in order to remain competitive. Digitalization has not only proven to be an indispensable component, but also a key driver of innovation and growth. The digitalization strategy outlines the roadmap for integrating technology into all aspects of the business.

A well-thought-out digitalization strategy is not only a response to technological developments, but also a way of putting customers and partners at the heart of business activities. It enables dynamic adaptation to changing expectations and needs and thus creates a foundation for long-term success and growth in the digital age.

People and expertise are the key resources that determine the success of digitalization. For this reason, the focus is on corporate culture and agile organization as drivers and catalysts of digitalization.

Digitalisation Strategy

Our digitalization strategy has driven us forward enormously in recent years and sets the course for the coming years. The core elements of the digital transformation are production, processes and products. We develop and market digital, intelligent products at the Fraunhofer Institute's Digital Hub in Dortmund. At the main plant in Attendorn, the digital transformation is mainly focused on production and processes.

Focus areas


In the field of production, we are talking about Industry 4.0, automation and more intelligence. Digitalization in production is gaining a central role, as it lays the foundation for increasing efficiency, improving quality and promoting innovation. The interaction between digital technologies and our employees is of great importance.


Digitalization enables us to change workflows and processes and even completely redesign them. This goes beyond mere automation - we are facing a profound transformation in which traditional manual working methods are being replaced by intelligent technologies and data analysis. This gives our employees new areas of creativity to focus on aspects that are important to us and our customers.


We develop and market digital, intelligent systems and solutions under the iQ water solutions brand. By bundling products, services and digital components, we can also offer our customers new solutions with new revenue models for their customers, which clearly sets us apart from the competition.


Robots are preferably used in work areas where the aim is to relieve humans of monotonous and/or physically strenuous tasks. Even when it comes to carrying out work continuously and very precisely, robots are sometimes superior and a valuable addition to humans. However, even though robots are becoming increasingly intelligent and can make decisions independently, they cannot manage without humans.

This requires new areas of responsibility and qualifications for which we prepare and specialize our employees.

3D Printing

A robot requires different grippers, so-called actuators, for each workpiece. For reasons of stability, such grippers are traditionally made of steel or aluminum, which is associated with corresponding costs and lead and procurement times. Due to the wide range of variants of our products, we looked for alternatives to metal actuators and opted for 3D printing of fiber composites. Printing is significantly cheaper than the metal version and can be produced
ideally be produced overnight after construction and is ready for immediate use.

Driverless transport systems

Logistics must function very precisely and reliably, which can only be achieved to a limited extent with analog methods. An automated transport system is ideal for this, in which a transport order control system in conjunction with lead times and priorities ensures that materials are supplied and disposed of on time. Low-priority transports can be carried out at night, for example, even when production is at a standstill. The prerequisite for this is a clear logistics structure with defined entry and exit stations, even if the vehicles can autonomously recognize free parking spaces within the stations. The vehicles are navigated by laser sensors in the vehicle, which virtually recognize their surroundings.

Container logistics

The various production areas must be supplied with the right quantity and the right material at the right time, otherwise there will be unplanned downtimes and waiting times that can affect the customer. The correct material is always assigned via the container number. Each container is equipped with a barcode (nothing is transported that does not have a barcode), which is used to identify the material number and carry out automatic booking processes in the background and eliminate errors. For selected containers, the fill level of the container is determined using a 3D sensor. This data plays an important role in logistics monitoring and warehouse planning.

Digital document recognition

In order to automate and speed up the recognition and processing of incoming documents such as orders, invoices and other documents, we have implemented an AI (artificial intelligence)-driven document recognition system. This system uses machine learning algorithms to recognize patterns in receipts, extract their data and assign them to business processes. The data is then automatically forwarded to our downstream IT system.

Digitale Personalakte

Digital personnel file

Digital production order

Production planning based on personnel and machine resources, writing a production order, a material and tool request, feedback of times and material consumption, QA inspection and feedback of actual values and subsequent storage. All of these are sub-processes of a manufacturing company.

People and machines as a team

Automation and robotics play a major role for us. Robots are preferably used in work areas where the aim is to relieve humans of monotonous and/or physically strenuous tasks. This helps us in particular with tasks that have to be carried out continuously and with great precision.

Our employees receive ongoing training and qualifications, as new skills are also required due to the progress of digitalization. This is how man and machine work together as a team.

Market changes

Our customers' markets and requirements are changing ever faster. They are also very volatile due to political and economic crises and speculation.
very volatile. Forecasts based on established planning processes, which are based on retrospective data, but also partly on experience and gut feeling, are becoming increasingly difficult and have to be adjusted much more frequently. The way we were able to plan 10 years ago simply no longer works today.


Rapid market changes also require us to adapt our planning. By changing our forecasting methods, supported by big data and data warehouses, we are trying to make our business planning faster but also more flexible. By adapting more quickly to reality, we ensure more stable processes and more stable production - in the interests of our customers.

Intelligent products

Many years ago, we began to address the topic of digitalization and Industry 4.0 internally. Initially, there were many doubts as to whether this was at all expedient - do we need it? Is everything actually going well as before? - we realized the benefits and endless potential that digitalization offers the company in all areas. This also led to the conviction that digitalization offers precisely these opportunities, possibilities and potential for companies in the water supply sector. This is why we created our digital unit iQ waster solutions.

New business models

Digitalization opens up numerous opportunities for us to generate data and derive insights from it. For example, in future we could use weather data and forecasts to predict the water consumption of a city or district. If we - or our customer - know how much water is needed and when, systems can automatically control the pressure in water pipes, for example. This makes water distribution more efficient and protects the pumps, which do not necessarily have to run at high pressure when less water is needed.

By bundling products, services and digital components (electronics/software), we can also offer our customers new solutions with new revenue models for their customers.

iQ water solutions

Under the iQ water solutions brand, which is part of the BEULCO Digital division, we develop and market digital, intelligent systems and solutions for our market and our customers. Our aim is to use these systems and solutions to make drinking water supplies more efficient and safer.

The systems are based on analogue products (e.g. water meters, standpipes or hydrants), which we digitize with electronics, sensors and software to create intelligent systems.

Agile organization

The focus is on building and developing an agile organization, as this is the foundation on which everything else is built. It will become increasingly important in order to achieve our goals. In an agile working environment, teamwork is at the heart of everything we do. This enables us to counteract the effects of the VUCA world. By working agilely in small, cross-departmental teams, we gain speed and flexibility.

New ways of work

Using agile methods, we try to break through cumbersome planning and be open to change. Here, we think in systems and understand interdependencies through cross-departmental teams. We are encouraged and empowered by self-management and self-organization, the willingness to change and the ability to learn, creativity and entrepreneurship. It is important to preserve the tried and tested, but also to be open to a new culture of innovation. Working and learning in the working groups is essential to equip us for future tasks and working methods, as we will be integrating these into our day-to-day work in the near future.

VUCA world

Today, we live in a so-called VUCA world (everything is becoming more complex, more volatile, more uncertain, more ambiguous). Long-term planning is becoming obsolete as a result; things simply no longer work the way we are used to. Companies must be able to adapt quickly and become more flexible in order to adjust to new situations and thus remain competitive. But it's not just about reacting: An agile organization is proactive and proactive in seizing opportunities as they arise.

More about our focus Areas

Sustainability at BEULCO

Act instead of react

We at BEULCO have also developed a sustainability strategy that focuses on the topic in all its facets. We want to act rather than react - when it comes to sustainability, we always focus on the balance between the three dimensions of ecology, economy and social responsibility.

Culture & organization at BEULCO

Kultur und agile Organisation als Basis

The digital transformation has revolutionized the business world in recent years, forcing companies to adapt and rethink. A key insight is that the change is not only technological in nature, but also requires a comprehensive realignment of corporate culture and structure.

Corporate culture plays a central role, as it forms the basis for change. It is important to create a culture that promotes openness to innovation, agility and continuous learning. Employees should be encouraged to bring in new ideas, take risks and continuously develop themselves.

Do you have any questions?

Matthias Parlings will be happy to answer any questions you may have about digitalization at BEULCO.


Matthias Parlings

Management board| Head of Transformation & Business Development