Quality Management, man checking goods in warehouse
Consumer products

New project with Arla Foods is a big success

Arla Foods wanted to streamline important it-processes to exploit the benefits of automation, and NNIT helped by integrating a solution. Claus Koch Pedersen, senior IT manager at Arla Foods, sees this as a win-win project.

Since 2013, NNIT has been an important IT partner for Arla Foods. Half a year ago, the two parties decided to start a major ITSM Change integration project to take yet another step on the road towards digital transformation.

The challenge facing Arla concerned changes to Arlas Foods’ IT systems. Such changes had to be made manually. The Change process is a major and data-heavy undertaking, and because all changes must be fully controlled, documented, risk-evaluated, and quality-assured, it has also been a time-consuming process.

NNIT designed an automation engine to digitize this process. Now, data can be exchanged quickly, safely, and efficiently, making the whole process far more agile.

Claus Koch Pedersen, senior IT manager at Arla Foods, explains: "It was a thorn in our side to be in the year 2018 and still see employees manually making changes to our systems - especially when Arla is a company that wants to take bold decisions and is active in its work to eliminate unnecessary bureaucracy. So this was an area we needed to look at and see how we could make it smarter."

Automation minimizes errors
Anders Bigum, NNIT's delivery director, was more than happy to be involved in delivering this kind of improvement to Arla: "We have tied the systems together, which is a very big step on a digital journey. The way system changes are managed has been completely transformed, and now hundreds of changes can be made at the same time."

Previously, NNIT and Arla Foods used two different systems without automated interface to manage changes. The process was time-consuming and associated with the risk of manual errors.

"We are constantly working to improve, streamline and remove unnecessary manual labor, where it makes sense to do so. These processes were especially well-suited to our agenda of automating these processes together with NNIT," says Claus Koch Pedersen from Arla Foods.

There are many benefits to automation - especially in making workflows more efficient, explains Anders Bigum from NNIT: "Automation provides Arla with a faster, smarter and more stable operation where time is not spent on corrective actions, reworks and so on."

First-movers in digital solutions
With this ITSM Change Integration, the automation engine can also be used in other areas, raising data quality on several fronts. The initial set-up phase is the most resource-consuming, but Claus Koch Pedersen expects that the new change process will provide a shorter lead time and a faster time to market, which will benefit the Arla business.

"With less manual work and therefore smaller risk of manual errors, we will experience a faster time to market which is essential for Arla due to our Digital Transformation. The project is the first step on the journey and will certainly serve as a catalyst in other areas," says Claus Koch Pedersen.

It has been a collaboration that has been beneficial for both Arla Foods and NNIT. Anders Bigum is extremely satisfied and sees great value in the fact that Arla Foods dares to be a frontrunner in digital transformation.

"At NNIT, we find it exciting when customers are eager to try new things out and be first-movers - it’s certainly a worthwhile investment. We have learned a great deal from the project, so now we need to take our experience to other customers," he says.

Claus Koch Pedersen explains that he is also extremely pleased with the collaboration and sees it as a win-win project:
"NNIT has taken the project seriously and managed it safely from start to finish. Our people have been fully committed and the work has run smoothly. Arla Foods wants to take bold decisions and is therefore not afraid to take the first step, take a chance and develop a set up that can benefit other companies," says Claus Koch Pedersen.