At its inaugural Innovation Forum held in Eskilstuna, Sweden, in August, Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) detailed its culture of creativity and inventiveness — which permeates every phase of product development, from design through production — as well as its bright vision for the future.
The event looked at the role innovation plays in drivelines, emerging market engineering, design, the company’s core values of quality, safety and environmental care, Tier 4 Final/Stage IV compliant engines and future technology. Journalists were also given a tour of Volvo’s Eskilstuna production campus to learn more about how operational excellence contributes to innovation within the company.
“Innovation is in our blood at Volvo CE,” says Anders P. Larsson, executive vice president of Technology at Volvo CE. “It’s infused into every part of our design, development and sales and marketing processes. The event provided us with the opportunity to explain our newest innovations to journalists – including our range of Tier 4f/Stage IV engines and new concepts.
“We also wanted to change the way people see Volvo by demonstrating that innovation doesn’t always have to mean more complex new products — it can be a relatively simple change that makes machine maintenance easier for customers, for example.”
A culture of innovation
Though a new event for Volvo CE, the Innovation Forum builds upon a similar event that took place in 2011. Now set to be held on a regular basis, the forum presents Volvo CE as a dynamic company whose culture of innovation sets it apart from competitors. While other companies may place an emphasis on technology, only Volvo’s innovation model is intertwined with a company culture of working with energy, passion and respect for individuals — known as the Volvo Way. Volvo innovation focuses on customers’ needs while nurturing and developing the innovative abilities of every employee through a bottom-up approach: no matter their roles, everyone’s input and ideas are valuable.
The daylong forum included work stations detailing six areas of Volvo CE innovation, as well as a factory tour and a manufacturing innovation session. It concluded with a dinner.