Receive up to € 20k to create your proof of concept


Access to leading corporate partners and opportunities for long-term collaboration
Receive up to EUR 20,000 in funding to draft a proof of concept – without giving up equity
Real-world use cases and unique datasets from established corporations

Data Challenges

DataHub Ruhr is a business building program that connects start-ups with established corporations in the Ruhr region. The program tasks start-ups with developing innovative, data-driven ideas to tackle use cases provided by our corporate partners. As part of a three-month collaboration, start-ups will draft a proof of concept, with the opportunity to receive up to EUR 20,000 in funding.
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Flying Craftsmen
Vonovia SE is Germany’s largest residential property company. Our craftsmen fleet provides over 12,000 maintenance services daily. In order to make our maintenance services for the tenants more efficient and transparent, we will review our scheduling process. Can you help optimize driving routes and customer waiting times?

Use Case

Vonovia SE is Germany’s largest residential property company with around 400,000 apartments in Germany, Austria and Sweden. With our team of more than 4,000 craftsmen, we do most of our apartment’s maintenance work ourselves.

The tenants, our customers, can report problems - like a leaking tab - either by making a phone call or by using the Vonovia-Tenant-App. 

A support ticket will be created in our SAP system with all the information needed by the craftsmen in charge of the repair.

There is an estimated repair time for almost every kind of repair case or damage description in our SAP system. 

Craftsmen are allocated to specific regions, mostly larger cities and their surroundings. About one week ahead, the craftsmen can see their scheduled appointments on their iPads for every day of the following week. Often, the starting point of their daily trip is not their allocated Vonovia office location, but rather their home address. 

A “normal” workday for our craftsmen consists of three time slots with multiple appointments. The tenant is only informed of the period of the time slot, but on the order or expected duration of the other appointments within the time slot.

  • Limited amount of fixed appointments: 7am – 8am
  • Morning time slot: 8am – 1pm
  • Afternoon time slot: 1pm – 6pm

Within the morning and afternoon time slot, the craftsmen are given the freedom to decide themselves in which order they will process the tenants’ repair tickets. A consequence of this process is the tenant’s uncertainty of when the craftsman may arrive within the five-hour time slot.

Through their iPads, the craftsmen are connected to the SAP system. 

This process has worked very well in the past. Customer satisfaction, working conditions and efficiency of the craftsmen have been quite good.

However, we think there is still room for further improvement for both customers and craftsmen.

The craftsmen could be supported by technology that suggests the shortest route so that gasoline expenditure and the carbon footprint are reduced and time is saved.

The customer could get notifications as to exactly when the craftsmen will arrive, similar to receiving notifications by parcel, pizza or taxi services like Uber or FREE NOW.

What you will need

  • Results, not just ideas
  • Knowledge about developing easy-to-use front end and easy-to-maintain back end applications for handheld iOS devices - like an iPad in this case
  • Software engineering skills to develop an application based on the MVP approach
  • Experience in optimizing routing systems
  • Support during a continual improvement process of your product
  • SAP knowledge is a plus

Expected result

  • A user-friendly MVP solution for craftsmen to support their route planning within the determined time slots
  • Increased customer satisfaction through more detailed information and transparency, e.g. by reduction of the ETA time window or/and an advanced notification system
  • It should be fun for both our craftsmen and our customers to use your solution (customers do not use the solution actively, only passively through the information they receive via SMS or their existing Vonovia-Tenant-App)
  • Reduction of our fleet’s total kilometers driven and its carbon footprint
  • In the case of a successful project, the solution must be connected to our SAP system in a follow-up project. Additionally, you will be required to deal with more complex scheduling challenges


The project can be divided into three main milestones:

  1. Optimize route planning within the three daily time slots. 

  1. Increase customer transparency, e.g. by a notification system for customers based on the optimized routing. 

  1. Perform real-world test with selected craftsmen test group and measure acceptance.

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Let's talk

Felix Schröder
Program Manager DataHub Ruhr

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Let's talk

Felix Schröder
Program Manager DataHub Ruhr