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Dah Chong Hong Revolutionizes Customer and Management Experiences

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DCH is a conglomerate with multi-faceted businesses. It has over seven decades of history in Hong Kong with footprints in China and across Asia. To modernize and integrate IT systems across five business units, DCH sought a flexible and agile application development platform.

DCH adopted OutSystems in 2021 and developed “DCH Smart Toolbox App - DigiFix”, an end-to-end electrical appliances customer and field service support platform that transformed customer and management experiences. DCH has shortened typical repair order times from weeks and sometimes months to a few days, resulting in significant productivity gains and increased customer satisfaction.

  • App Modernization
  • Customer Experience
  • Digital Core Systems
  • Field Service Optimization
  • Lotus Notes Rebuild
  • Mobile Applications
  • Operational Efficiency
  • Web Apps and Portals

Integrate IT Systems of Five Business Units on a Cloud Platform

Dah Chong Hong (DCH) is a leading, Hong-Kong-based trading and distribution company. With over 70 years of experience, 16,000 employees, and a presence in 13 Asian markets, the company provides goods and services via five primary business units, including motor, food, healthcare, electrical appliances, and logistics.

“OutSystems provides a technology platform that allows us to design our customer and employee experiences by optimising our workflows. The DigiFix portal built on OutSystems is integrated with multiple systems to enable seamless operations.”

Alan Chung Chief Information Officer, Dah Chong Hong

The company’s IT team, led by Chief Information Officer, Alan Chung, includes around 230 specialists serving the different business units. Developers in each unit built their own applications tailored to their unit’s unique challenges, and many operations still relied on paper-based processes.

This diversified IT landscape resulted in distributed and inconsistent data that was slow and costly to consolidate. Management needed a centralized view of processes across the organization to make informed decisions and respond to market changes on time.

“DCH has multiple, highly diverse business units, so it is challenging for us to consolidate and integrate various systems to support our transformation needs. We have to better utilize resources for digital transformation to support our business objectives."

Alan Chung Chief Information Officer, Dah Chong Hong

Chung’s team needed a solution to integrate DCH’s highly fragmented IT systems and migrate many existing components, including its Lotus Notes internal workflow systems to a standard platform and framework.

In 2021, the team started looking for a fast deployment platform to help them modernize the company’s systems and facilitate the overall IT operations, digital transformation, and service innovation. After considering various options, DCH chose OutSystems to replace the home-grown legacy systems and automate manual workflows while allowing developers to build applications on the cloud.

Why DCH chose OutSystems:
  • Powerful integration
  • Speed up application development and improve agility
  • Modernize legacy systems

Establish a New Field Service Portal to Redesign Electrical Appliance Maintenance Operations

One of the processes that DCH wanted to improve was its electrical appliance repair service. Customers, technicians, and administrative staff interacted via a highly manual process involving phone appointments, onsite cash payments, and a complex billing procedure that took about a month to complete.

Lack of automated and real time communication and reporting also meant technicians were not always well-equipped to solve issues on their first visit and often needed to return to the customer site. DCH’s IT team realized that digitizing this process was a perfect fit for OutSystems as there were many points of integrations required.

With OutSystems, Chung's team built DCH Smart Toolbox App – DigiFix, the field service portal and mobile app platform that centralizes and automates the communication between customers, technicians and DCH staff.

“Building the Smart Toolbox App Platform - DigiFix on OutSystems was a game changer for our service. The low-code platform enables us to customize our own process and connect systems across cloud platforms."

Alan Chung Chief Information Officer, Dah Chong Hong

As Chung explains, "The customer experience is optimized—they can place bookings, get quotes and request after-sales service through the internet. Our staff now have real-time access to all the information needed to work efficiently." Customers can pay online through an integrated digital payment system. For DCH staff, the new solution streamlines technicians' roster management and assignments allocation, and payment handling.

In addition to the DigiFix platform, Chung’s team used OutSystems to replace legacy workflow systems while standardizing and improving processes. These include a new digital workspace, a new HR & finance portal and internal workflow systems that replace legacy Notes Domino applications.

“With OutSystems, we managed to develop our own platform, optimizing our process, reducing the time spent on internal duty allocation, and streamlining the payment process. We brought digital transformation to life for our company and customers."

Alan Chung Chief Information Officer, Dah Chong Hong

Revolutionizing Customer Experience and Internal Workflow

The launch of the DCH DigiFix Platform revolutionized both customer experiences and internal workflow of the electrical appliance maintenance process, offering greater flexibility and visibility for customers and DCH alike. Customers can now make and change appointments anytime, pay online, and share after-services feedback and rating via the platform.

Benefits include:

  • Increased efficiency in roster management. With the automated reassignment of technicians, appointment changes that used to take a week can now be rescheduled in two days.
  • Fewer customer revisits. Technicians have greater visibility of customers’ needs and can choose the appropriate tools and components, reducing the likelihood of multiple visits.
  • Better, seamless reporting and communication. Technicians now instantly report job status via the mobile app, streamlining communications and providing real-time data for the back office and customers.
  • Faster maintenance process. DCH Toolbox helped reduce the typical maintenance execution time from up to two months to a couple of days.
  • Faster invoicing and payments. Faster invoicing and digital payments have helped speed up the invoicing and payments process from months to one day.

“DCH Smart Toolbox App – DigiFix redesigned the entire maintenance process and revolutionized experiences for customers, DCH staff, and the management team, providing greater flexibility and visibility."

Alan Chung Chief Information Officer, Dah Chong Hong

Chung’s developers appreciate the flexibility, agility, and speed of application development with OutSystems. Reusable components, application templates, and integrations from the OutSystems Forge marketplace further accelerate development and prevent developers from wasting time “reinventing the wheel.” Moreover, technology managers have a holistic view of what developers are building across all the business units.

With OutSystems, delivering new solutions now takes days instead of months, and DCH continues to accelerate its digital transformation journey more consistently across the company’s business units.

OutSystems has been such a success for DCH that its subsidiary Laputa, an IT service provider, has become an OutSystems certified partner to deliver various apps for DCH including this DCH Smart Toolbox App. The firm now offers OutSystems development services to 100+ customers in Greater China, APAC, and EMEA.