John Hoffman, Executive Vice President of Sales and Market Development, Legrand North America

A little bit about John

I’ve worked in the electrical industry for about 28 years, starting out as a manufacturer’s representative in the New York and New Jersey market. Then I began working for Wiremold, now part of the Legrand Group, where I’ve led various departments such as sales, product management, and marketing. For the past seven years, I’ve served as EVP of Sales and Market Development. Throughout my career, I’ve had the opportunity to see the industry evolve from many angles. 

Why he’s an Industry Data Exchange (IDX) advocate

The IDX provides us with instrumental advantages; we conduct just about every EDI transaction set (e.g. orders, invoices, SPA reconciliation, order acknowledgement), through the IDX. This application increases speed-to-market and helps us communicate to customers faster because it’s a direct route. The IDX web tools are well-designed, intuitive and invaluable to our team every day.

Plus, you can’t beat the responsiveness of the IDEA support team; we can be talking to someone in minutes if needed. For example, one of my colleagues had a very important personal commitment, and just before he left for that, an unexpected EDI error occurred and his division was not able to receive any orders. IDEA brought together their support staff to address the issue and made him feel like he was their only priority until the error was fixed. They quickly identified the problem, collaborated with vendors and customers on our behalf and resolved the issue in time for him to make the event. Whether it’s setting up new trading partners, adding extra AS2 connections or developing custom scripts for us, IDEA consistently projects and amplifies our image in the EDI community.

IDW and IDX: A Winning Combo

Legrand also uses the Industry Data Warehouse (IDW) to synchronize our product data with distributors and keeps all of our departments on the same page. The IDW eBusiness standards and tools help us to improve the quality of product data we’re sending to customers. And more importantly, it delivers our high quality product data in an organized manner in real time online which has been proven to speed up sales. For example, when we did a product line conversion with a customer, having all the information in the IDW made the process go exponentially smoother and faster.

By using the IDW and the IDX together, our business practices are more streamlined, efficient, and manageable than ever before. As end user customers (especially the next generation) become more sophisticated, they expect a B2C-like experience. The IDW and IDX will enable us to meet their rapidly-evolving expectations by supporting our channels to market.