Getränke Essmann is a beverage wholesaler and logistics system provider for organized food retail for North West Germany and North Rhein-Westphalia.

During the introduction of SAP LES one of the goals set was to continue to grow levels of client satisfaction among customers from the retail and gastronomy sectors. To achieve this, it was necessary to reduce the picking error figure to an absolute minimum by collating customer orders on mixed pallets; and also, in parallel to this, to continue to increase efficiency in the picking process.

The use of the latest Pick-by-Voice technology with a direct SAP LES connection to the warehouse management functionality met these requirements. In addition, the entire logistics process is shown with SAP standard software in full and without the use of middleware.


The family-run business, which was founded in Lingen in 1916, employs approximately 400 employees and ensures that each of its 4,000 plus clients is supplied with top-notch services.

As a beverage wholesaler and logistics systems provider for the organized food retail sector Getränke Essmann maintains branch offices in North West Germany, the Münster region and the district of the Ruhr.
The range includes bottled beer, draft beer, alcohol-free beverages and wine. In addition to this there is the rental service with tap systems, counters, beer garden sets, refrigerated trucks, mobile bars and leased property exchange.

Getränke Essmann has its own fleet of vehicles, which consists of several Jumbo semi-trailers, articulated lorries, interchangeable body vehicles, trailer trucks and container trains.

High stock turnover volumes, lots of different beverages and a quick delivery to market along with a minimal error quota – these criteria require highly optimized logistics.

Getränke Essmann has been using SAP R/3 as its IT platform since 1988. Prior to the introduction of SAP LES in 2004 the warehouse processing was still carried out on a document basis.

Getränke Essmann chose SAP LES for their logistics operations because of continual growth, high cost pressure and the aim to further improve their service level. Thanks to the direct connection of Pick-by-Voice clients to SAP WM additional interfaces could be specifically avoided.

SAP HUM (SAP Handling Unit Management): BATCH TRACKING

  •  Batch categorization and goods traceability
  • MHD handling
  • HU shipping labels
  • Customer-specific picking (commercial tours)
  • Multi-customer picking (gastro tours)


  •  System-led order computation according to priority (picking waves)
  • Route-optimized picking
  • Picking according to loading plans
  • NVE shipping label printing per voice entry control


  • Clear Talkman user management in SAP
  • Info dialog (e.g. current lane, material description, handling unit)
  • Special functions (e.g. pallet change, lane change, skip position)

  • SAP R/3 LES with WM, Rel. 4.6c Logistics Execution System (centralized LES system)
  • Introduction of SAP Warehouse Management, replacement of paper-based warehouse management
  • Comprehensive logging features in conjunction with user administration
  • Secure extraction via speech-operated verification code (Pick-by-Voice)
  • Logging of performance-related warehouse tasks
  • Use of SAP Handling Unit Management (MHD, batches)

  • Centralized SAP LES system based on the Fujitsu Siemens flex-frame
  • Broadband radio system by IND
  • Vocollect Talkman T2
  • zetesIND forklift terminals (with Touch Console)

  • Real-time exchange of all information, instructions and confirmations
  • Maximum productivity, due to hands and eyes being freed up
  • Minimizing of picking errors
  • Straightforward handling, short orientation time for users
  • Dual-level architecture SAP Talkman (saving on middleware)
  • Real-time communication with SAP Voice Console
  • Maximum investment protection through process mapping in SAP
  • Harmonization of the logistics IT system landscape
  • Flexible speech mode by switching between pro mode / normal mode
  • Reduced servicing and maintenance costs
Key Facts


  • Lingen
  • Westerstede
  • Dorsten


  •  Full range of over 2,000 different types of beverages
  • annual sales of approx. 2.9 mill. hl
  • approx. 1,200-2,500 crates picked per day
  • 12 jumbos (each with 2 semi-trailers)
  • 8 articulated lorries (each with 2 semi-trailers)
  • 31 interchangeable body vehicles
  • 24 trailer trucks (local transport)
  • 2 container trains with 52 containers
  • 13 Talkman T2 voice clients
  • Dual-shift operation
  • 24 hrs. delivery


  • Implementation incl. test March 2004-October 2004
  • Go-live in Lingen November 2004
  • Go-live in Dorsten February 2004
  • Go-live in Westerstede March 2005