Audi is preparing its first purely digital worldwide market launch for the new A3 family
- Roughly 35,000 sales and service employees from 90 countries using virtual technology to learn about the cars
- Formats range from web-based training, video tutorials and chats to augmented reality and virtual reality training
- Horst Hanschur, Head of Retail Business Development and Customer Services: “In view of the current situation, we are accelerating the shift to digitalization we had already initiated”
Audi is currently preparing the company’s first ever market launch of a new model in purely digital form: the new A3 family will be delivered to customers worldwide during the course of the year. About 15,000 sales and service employees as well as about 20,000 service technicians at retail partners around the globe have to be prepared and trained for this. In view of the coronavirus crisis, Audi is for the first time completely foregoing face-to-face training and instead is using a variety of digital formats ranging from web-based training to augmented reality and virtual reality training.
“With the new A3 family, we are launching one of our most important model lines on the market this year. Thanks to the great commitment, creativity and motivation of our team and our partners, we were able to very swiftly and flexibly switch over to digital training formats so that our worldwide sales and service network could optimize their preparations for this,” said Horst Hanschur, Head of Retail Business Development and Customer Services at AUDI AG. “We benefit here from our many years of experience in using digital tools for our sales and service training. In view of the currently difficult worldwide situation, we are further accelerating the shift to digitalization we had already initiated. We are already working intensively on the next steps and we want to further develop this methodology, especially for our electric offensive. With the increasing digitalization of our vehicles, we are consequently also digitalizing our training methodology.”
The training of the more than 35,000 worldwide sales and service employees is based on the train-the-trainer principle: AUDI AG provides centralized training – and normally also physically at the location – for about 400 product, sales and service trainers as well as about 250 technical trainers from 90 markets worldwide. These trainers then pass on what they’ve learned to the respective employees at their locations. To ensure uniform quality standards worldwide, AUDI AG had already produced a large number of digital training formats for this purpose – some of them in the company’s own television studio – and had made them available in various languages. Virtual reality formats were also used for the first time for the market launch of the Audi e-tron. This know-how is now being applied to the train-the-trainer courses for the A3 family.
The “Central Launch Experience” (CLX) for the market launch teams in sales and service started several weeks ago with web-based training courses on new design features, engine/transmission variants and assist systems, for example. There are also video conferences where individual detailed questions can be clarified with experts from Ingolstadt. Extensive training documents are also available on an online platform for the global markets.
Technical training for the new A3 has also been presented on a purely digital basis. A digital self-learning program is offered for the model with pre- and post-testing, its own video format – Audi Service TV – and expert tutorials for questions coming from the markets. An augmented reality training course on the drive units will soon be supplemented with a virtual reality application with the technical highlights of the new Audi A3.
All content is available worldwide in the “Audi Knowledge Tank” digital knowledge database.
Orders can now be placed in Europe for the new Audi A3 Sportback* and the A3 Sedan* and these will arrive at dealerships in the summer, with rollout in other markets to follow successively. The Audi A3 g-tron and a plug-in hybrid model will also be added to the range this year.