Case Study Messe Düsseldorf:
Improvement of cross-departmental coordination processes

Messe Düsseldorf is one of the largest and most successful trade fair companies in the world, with approximately 40 trade fairs, including 22 leading international trade fairs, and more than 300,000 square meters of exhibition space. The extensive portfolio necessitates close collaboration between different departments and trades. With the support of Asana and BridgeFlow, communication and coordination processes have been significantly improved, making collaboration more effective.


Quick Check


  • Optimizing work processes
  • Analysis phase
  • Individual employee training
  • Support in the transformation process


  • Optimization of project coordination
  • Improving communication
  • Transparent storage of information and files
  • Roll-out of Asana as a new work and project management tool


  • 4 Months in 2019


  • The complexity of the projects has become more manageable.
  • Communication has been significantly optimized.
  • Work processes have been made more transparent.
  • The time spent on coordination meetings has been significantly reduced.

Streamlining Project Management at Messe Düsseldorf

Messe Düsseldorf holds a pivotal role as an international hub for business connections, especially with its 75 events held abroad. These gatherings offer valuable platforms for local industries to showcase themselves and expand their networks. Given the wide-ranging portfolio of the fair, effective collaboration across various departments and trades is essential. This necessitates well-structured project management to support employees in their tasks. Since the end of 2019, Messe Düsseldorf has been leveraging Asana to optimize this interdisciplinary project management and enhance efficiency.

Efficient coordination processes

The collaboration between individual departments is so complex in planning and execution that all organizational units require absolute transparency to ensure the successful execution of events. Due to the use of different communication technologies, there were delays in operations. More efficient and transparent communication was essential for smooth operations.

The inefficient work process manifested in missed deadlines, delayed projects, and a high time commitment for conveying status updates during cross-departmental meetings. Communication was not centralized but scattered across emails, Teams messages, and Excel sheets. An optimized workflow was urgently needed. As a solution, the introduction of Asana as a new work and project management tool was decided upon in 2019.

“The biggest change brought about by the introduction of Asana was adjusting my own mindset, understanding the structure of Asana: What are teams? What are projects? What are tasks? It took some time and perhaps a few nerves initially, but once I untangled the knot, the fun and understanding came naturally.”

Jessica Schmidt, ProWein Team



In collaboration with our specialists, Asana has been introduced as the central communication and process management tool. Teams can now effortlessly create tasks, set deadlines, and assign them directly to the responsible parties. All project-related files and documents are seamlessly stored in the system, allowing all stakeholders to access them anytime, anywhere. Asana simplifies complex processes, making project content, responsibilities, and schedules transparent. As an efficient tool, Asana significantly facilitates work in all areas of operation.

Step 1: Comprehensive audit

The analysis phase spanned several weeks and involved various departments. Through proven methods such as stakeholder interviews, the Messe Düsseldorf team gained profound insights into their existing work processes. With the support of BridgeFlow, participants gained valuable insights into:

  •  The effectiveness of portfolios for organizing projects
  • The use of workloads for capacity estimation
  • The utilization of timelines for project lead times.

Step 2: Individual training for employees

The rollout of Asana was characterized by clear communication channels and efficient implementation. The adaptation of the platform to the needs of Messe Düsseldorf by BridgeFlow, as well as the coordination processes, proceeded smoothly and without delays. The team at Messe Düsseldorf gathered exclusively positive experiences with the changes in the work process. This was not least due to comprehensive training and continuous support from the BridgeFlow team.

Step 3: Optimization of coordination processes

Previously, it was a real challenge to oversee the complexity of projects. However, thanks to Asana, the Messe Düsseldorf team is now able to handle this task effortlessly. Employees can clearly define their deadlines using timelines and milestones. With the help of workload and portfolios, team members can better assess and manage their individual workloads and streamline their projects. Despite standardized usage, Asana offers the flexibility to adapt work to preferred working styles.


Transparent communication without emails

Despite the initial challenges, the employees of Messe Düsseldorf willingly embraced the new system. They invested time to effectively utilize the features of the Asana platform, which ultimately led to an increase in their satisfaction and success. This positive development did not go unnoticed.

Thanks to the numerous notification options in Asana, internal communication no longer relies on emails. Jan Albrecht, an employee in the organization department, particularly appreciates the red dot in the browser indicating a new message. Furthermore, meeting minutes and to-do lists are posted in Asana, making them visible to all authorized employees. Deadlines for tasks are clearly displayed, as are their impacts on other tasks. This way, teams keep an eye on the current project status, deadlines, and upcoming tasks at all times.

Efficient work despite times of crisis

Thanks to the introduction of Asana, Messe Düsseldorf gained a significant advantage when the majority of employees switched to remote work overnight due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The system was already fully implemented and operational, allowing collaboration between teams to not only be maintained but also strengthened. Working time could be effectively utilized, even from home, by structuring meetings more effectively in terms of content and time.

Task assignment, previously conducted during weekly stand-up meetings, is now entirely handled through Asana. Additionally, any number of individuals – internal or external – can be invited to projects, and outstanding questions, tasks, and requirements can be seamlessly shared and updated. 

With Asana, the status of a project is always visible, and Messe Düsseldorf employees not only keep track but also can resolve tasks directly through a Jour-fixe agenda without needing to discuss every detail with the team. Asana enables the team to achieve great things together, even remotely.



“BridgeFlow has professionally trained many of our teams in the use of Asana, ensuring a clear structure. Asana has simplified and made complex processes more transparent. Even virtually conducted training sessions enable our teams in the home office to utilize this tool effectively.”

Dirk Zschommler, Business Owner Collaboration Tools, Messe Düsseldorf

Messe Düsseldorf

Messe Düsseldorf is one of the largest and most successful trade fair organizers worldwide. With 635 employees and over 5,000 events in over 80 years, the company hosts 20 number-one events every year.



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