As with most of today’s companies, Volkswagen is undergoing a digital transformation, and for the Wolfsburg giant, it means from the start of its design process.
The move is meant to foster more precise and interactive designs, company-wide collaboration and the ability to visualize designs in a wide-range of scenarios. Over the past two years, Volkswagen has completely revamped its working methods, from design right through to the final sale, with all work now handled digitally to the benefit of its workforce not just in doing their work more efficiently but also in providing them with personal and professional growth opportunities.
“Above all, the ongoing staff training and software optimization lead to an increase in employee satisfaction, in addition to a faster pace of development and a higher product quality,” says Klaus Bischoff, Head of Volkswagen Design. “At Volkswagen, digitalization is alive in design – and this is something that employees also benefit from: the new processes open up exciting prospects for personal development.”
Among the new tools available to designers is a high-resolution LED screen 18 metres wide, which can provide full-scale virtual models to be optimized before cost- and time-intensive clay models are created. Volkswagen says the savings are in the tens of millions of Euros since 2016.
High-resolution data glasses allow several people to simultaneously create, jointly develop and evaluate photorealistic quality products, using Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR and AR, respectively). Volkswagen Design Centres around the world can identify trends, develop ideas and optimize concepts.
And it goes beyond structural development, with engineers able to join in the discussion and become deeply integrated into the process, regardless of how far away they may be).