Solving for hard things: How De' Longhi streamlined operations around the world
Cloud Unit Manager, Huware
Shoring up your overseas operations? In our new series, learn how partners like Huware are helping De' Longhi and other manufacturers reinvent their SAP ERP on the cloud.
Welcome to Solving for Hard Things, a new series that showcases why business and technical partners are one of the most important components of any successful innovation initiative — often just as important as the technology itself. In our latest edition, we hear from Fabrizio Clerici, cloud unit manager of Huware, a Milan-based technology consultancy. Here he discusses how Huware worked with De' Longhi to streamline business processes across its global operations.
Business management touches every aspect of your operation. For manufacturers, this can include finance, materials management, sales and distribution, warehouse operations, and more. To organize all of these activities, the Italian-based De' Longhi Group relies on SAP for its enterprise resource planning, which in turn helps teams manage one of the world’s leading portfolios of small domestic appliances dedicated to coffee, cooking, air conditioning, and home care.
After De’Longhi expanded their operations into Asia around a decade ago, they found that, over time, their on-premises servers in Hong Kong could not keep up with their operational needs, especially when it came to their SAP solutions. They needed something with the flexibility and robust disaster-recovery capabilities found in cloud-based SAP offerings in order to ensure business consistency and growth.
“All in all, this was not an easy project,” said De’ Longhi Group Technology Manager Walter Frasson. “We had an Italian team, servers in Taiwan and Singapore, and our production facility in mainland China.”
De’ Longhi already had longstanding relationships with Google Cloud, dating to its migration to Workspace in 2013, and decided that operating its SAP on Google Cloud could help address many of its needs. My team at Huware then joined them to help implement the migration, thanks to our experience helping others transfer SAP and other on-prem workloads.
Thousands of companies count on SAP to help run their organizations, and many are looking to transform their enterprise resource management (ERP) programs by moving them to the cloud. No matter where you are on this journey, here are some practices we’ve found to be especially important:
- A seamless strategy — It’s important to align on a migration approach that limits disruption, especially for critical digital infrastructure like ERP. Because of our experience with SAP and Google Cloud, Huware was able to help De' Longhi create and execute a migration strategy that fit their needs. Together, we were able to make the migration over one weekend so that they could get right back to work on Monday.
- Security and flexibility — While it may have once been true that on-prem solutions were seen as more secure and stable than the cloud, the reverse is now very much the case. Cloud-based virtual machines like Compute Engine are a natural fit for SAP because it offers secure, customizable compute service. This allows De' Longhi to create as many virtual machines as they need, letting them grow as needed without the added infrastructure management costs that come with expanding on-premises servers. They can also quickly grow or shrink with seasonal fluctuations in consumer demand for De’ Longhi’s products.
- Ensure continuity — To improve reliability, we set up two application servers in two different zones in Singapore, as well as disaster recovery in Taiwan via asynchronous database replication to further improve reliability. With this setup, De’ Longhi had a modernized SAP landscape that’s ready for the latest S/4 HANA updates and improved disaster recovery. The confidence such reliability brings frees up their IT staff to concentrate on more important tasks than monitoring a data center.
With its SAP ERP on the cloud, De' Longhi Group now has ten-times better data availability, recovery time objective, and recovery point objective. In the event of an outage, the team can switch to the alternate zone with zero data loss and a recovery point of less than ten minutes.
That means that De’ Longhi’s enhanced IT can help keep manufacturing and logistics teams brewing without losing any sleep over business management.
Want to solve for hard things? To learn more about how partners help organizations make the most of Google Cloud, you can visit our partner page.