In cooperation with GS1, Squadra has again organized successful management workshops for the sector DIY and garden and animal about Product Information Management (PIM). The most important lesson: PIM is so much more than a system.

The attention for PIM in the sector DIY, garden and animal is great. 40 managers of suppliers, wholesalers and retailers from the sector came together in the popular workshops about PIM and the GS1 data pool, organized by Squadra. They received answers to questions such as: ‘What is product information management?’, ‘How do I make a business case?’, ‘How do I organize this in my organization?’ and ‘Which systems can I best use for this?’

Good product data base for omnichannel

More questions are coming up about how to properly combine the use of the data pool with PIM. To be able to answer these questions, the cooperation with PIM-expert Squadra is sought. Also in the sector do-it-yourself, garden and animal omnichannel plays an increasingly important role and companies often struggle with how they can organize their product data properly for this. Besides, the subject is still not well enough on the strategic agenda. Marco van der Lee, sector manager at GS1, thinks this is a shame: “The proper organization and structuring of product data is crucial for good (online) traceability of products and to facilitate omnichannel effectively. We like to give our participants the opportunity to get acquainted with a way to do this properly with PIM and the GS1 data pool.”

The workshop responds to a very current need

Customers and new technology are drastically changing the processes required for good product data. Van der Lee: “And it’s not just about whether data is entered correctly into a system. You have to ask yourself how important product data is for you as an organization. Is it a bad thing or is it of strategic importance? And how do you design your processes and your organization accordingly? And do you make agreements about this with your trading partners?”

First the business case

During the workshop, we gave extensive consideration to why companies would want to invest in product information management. It is important that an organization has a clear PIM vision and strategy before a company possibly chooses a system. After all, PIM is not a goal in itself. The participants themselves were asked to answer questions such as: ‘What is the main reason to start working with PIM? Is it better customer satisfaction, a shorter time-to-market, or is it to reduce the integral chain costs?

“Great to be with a group of people who all see the importance of proper data


Participants took home the following lessons:

  • PIM is more than a system. A successful implementation also requires making the right choices in business processes, the organization, governance and the data model.
  • A business case is about more than just numbers. It is also about the vision of product data in your organization.
  • Make a distinction in who is ultimately and who is operationally responsible for product data, because that requires different qualities. Provide a consultation structure between all the various disciplines involved.
  • Products are not all equally important: start with ‘must have data’. Then enrich your top products with extra data to sell them even better.
  • Use existing standards such as the GS1 Global Product Classification as much as possible.
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    Some of the participants’ reactions:
  • It’s great to be with a group of people who all understand the importance of proper data.
  • The workshop responds to a very current need.
  • PIM is well explained from all sides. The usefulness and necessity become clearer and clearer, even if you don’t work with it yet.
  • Interesting, not long-winded and good interaction.
  • Well organized. Clear information and a nice mixed group of companies.