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Centralizing 30 Companies and 50 Applications with SharePoint

A leading transportation and logistics service provider was looking for a better way to manage their applications during their rapid growth through acquisitions. With 32 companies merging into one organization, the company soon had more than 50 business applications to be centralized in the new business structure. To expedite the solution for readiness, Netrix utilized SharePoint to overhaul their shipping applications within their public-facing website.

The Client

A leading asset-light transportation and logistics service provider offered a full suite of solutions, including customized and expedited shipping services and logistics, inventory management, freight consolidation, international freight forwarding, customs brokerage, and comprehensive global supply chain services. Through 32 acquisitions in just 18 months, the company was named one of Fortune’s 100 Fastest Growing Companies and was experiencing challenging technical integration requirements between each of the entities.

The Challenge

The rapid growth brought increased success along with operational challenges. Newly acquired subsidiaries came with their legacy technologies and processes. Every acquisition meant less centralization, more administration, and fewer economies of scale. Redundancies were common, and IT could not keep up with the acquisition pace when integrating new companies into the technology scope. Further, the business required a new, interactive online presence that brought it all together seamlessly while giving customers and prospects a consistent modern user experience. The goal was to unite all these subsidiaries under the primary brand, and publicly redefine the company as a single collaborative voice and organization.

Netrix needed to understand the company’s goals, challenges, and strategy to quickly develop and implement a custom, high-performance technology environment delivering flexibility, efficiency, and consistency. The more the Netrix team worked with key executives, department heads, and team leaders, the more company stakeholders became aware of the ways Netrix could help them with both the challenge and opportunity they faced.

Netrix helped bridge knowledge gaps that existed between new and existing staff. Massive technology redundancies were uncovered, and it was determined that more than 50 applications were doing the work that should have been done by about 30 applications. The Netrix team spent three months in the discovery process, during which requirements were gathered to drive the solution and scope of the work going forward.

The Solution

Netrix’s work included software development and integration, web design, management consulting, business analysis, and project management, all focused on three critical areas – modernizing and consolidating applications, centralizing processes, and data management.

Deploying a Microsoft SharePoint and .NET team for this project, Netrix rebuilt and modernized more than 30 applications to work across all subsidiaries in the organization, provided an effective and efficient content management system, rewrote user management processes and tools, and deployed new, public-facing SharePoint-based web tools, while integrating everything with the company’s legacy AS/400 system.

Effective implementation meant extensive testing and training throughout. Netrix created custom testing scripts and tested all applications on different browsers, platforms, and operating systems to ensure effective development and implementation. The Netrix team quickly familiarized themselves with several different applications to centralize the data.

Following a specific development program meant onboarding new business process management staff to streamline the deliverables. A communication plan ensured everyone had the most current information, while frequent meetings and daily status reporting provided transparency and timely updates. Netrix enabled a client-accessible SharePoint site called Knowledge Hub to facilitate collaboration and house all knowledge captured throughout the project, including all documentation, videos, and Visio process diagrams for documentation.

Netrix worked diligently to train and empower the client’s team to assume the ongoing development of the application. The entire project was completed with minimal downtime and operational impact. Netrix was able to rebuild and modernize the organization’s entire application suite in about a year.

The company’s new website is helping to ensure ongoing success. The website serves as a business transaction system, where the company and its various stakeholders can conduct business easily, efficiently, and securely. Extensive post-rollout support has kept everything on solid ground despite the magnitude of the project, and a new website integration process ensures the client can easily integrate new companies into its technology environment as it continues its aggressive acquisition schedule.

The Result

  • More than 50 redundant business applications and their data needed to be integrated with primary parent’s business systems.>
  • Gaps needed to be identified and addressed among IT teams across various organizations
  • Online presence needed to be updated to represent the merged businesses and provide a seamless customer experience following the acquisitions.
  • Netrix rebuilt and modernized 30 applications to work on the company’s public website across all subsidiaries and acquired entities in the organization.
  • All apps and data were integrated with the company’s legacy AS/400 system.
  • A SharePoint PMO served as project hub, and the project was completed in less than a year with minimal downtime or operational impact.

Why Netrix?

We specialize in network infrastructure, security, software development, systems services, unified communications, mobility, cloud and managed services, as well as the hardware, software, and services needed to implement them.
  • We help our clients with integrated packages of custom solutions that simplify technology sourcing and accelerate deployment.
  • In addition, we work to ensure the ROI of your technology with a robust set of user adoption services.