Difficulty providing worldwide technical support and SLA compliance in the midst of significant company growth
Needed a future-proof solution capable of supporting automotive industry and customer-specific standards, with low-risk migration and no service interruptions
- Guaranteed 99.5% SLA and 24x7 technical support
- User-transparent migration with no downtime
- On-demand on-boarding and mapping services
- Monthly reporting with KPIs
- Real-time problem alerts
- Ability to quickly implement new EDI standards upon request
- Web EDI/EDTI provides smaller customers and partners with a low-cost option
- SaaS deployment is a perfect fit for INERGY's business model and strategy
“We were looking for a partner that could offer future-proof features. For example, we are not yet using some of the newer protocols, such as OFTP2, but we know that Axway has them and can provide them quickly and easily when the time comes to do so.”
Global Support for a Global Supply Chain
INERGY Automotive Systems, now fully owned by Plastic Omnium, is the leading Tier One supplier of plastic fuel systems to major automobile manufacturers around the world. INERGY operates 25 manufacturing facilities in 18 countries, employing more than 4,000 people globally. In 2010, INERGY will deliver 11.7 million fuel systems, with sales of € 1.1 billion.
Facing the dual challenges of company growth and increased automotive supply chain complexity, INERGY needed to implement a new level of EDI service that could be highly responsive to its customers’ engineering and industrial challenge worldwide, while at the same time reducing the burden on INERGY’s systems support team.
Fielding the Challenges of Continued Growth
Since 1996, INERGY has used Axway’s solution for the automotive industry, Axway Tradesync Integration Manager (Axway TSIM), in a hosted deployment where applications and technical support were still managed internally by the INERGY systems support team. When INERGY established new plants in China, South America and Eastern Europe, the team had to define new SLAs and guarantee 24x7 support to a burgeoning number of customers and partners. With this new level of growth, INERGY recognized that current systems support staffing levels would not suffice.
Seeking to improve its EDI service offering, expand technical support capabilities, and handle ever-increasing message volumes, INERGY began to consider the advantages of moving to a SaaS (Software as a Service) operating model.
“We now have a stable platform that guarantees SLAs of 99.5%, and provides 24x7 technical phone support, including hardware, software and all aspects of communication.”
Making the Leap to SaaS
INERGY scoped SaaS offerings and Axway ranked as INERGY’s number one choice based on several important criteria:
- Axway’s proposed two-phased SaaS transformation project lowered the risks of migration and enabled Axway to complete the migration within its own facilities in a very short time frame.
- Axway could complete the project — including migration — with no resources from INERGY.
- Axway’s offer was extremely competitive — TSIM over SaaS would cost no more than full ownership of the solution, and service levels would be guaranteed.
- Axway has an established reputation as a leader for EDI, managed services, and SaaS supplier to major automotive industry manufacturers around the world.
Axway delivered on all counts. “The migration was smooth and quick, and required very little time and resources on our part. As part of the migration project, Axway initially took over the management of TSIM through its managed hosted services offering. This meant Axway had the opportunity to gain expertise on how the solution was used at INERGY, and therefore, Axway was very familiar with our solution when it came time to migrate to SaaS,” explained Christophe Leffray, Global Production Systems Manager at INERGY. “The operation was entirely transparent to our users, who experienced no downtime.”
INERGY’s SaaS implementation of Axway TSIM has enabled the company to greatly improve EDI service levels and technical support. “We now have a stable platform that guarantees SLAs of 99.5 percent, and provides 24x7 technical phone support, including hardware, software, and all aspects of communication,” said Leffray.
Axway TSIM also supports new and emerging EDI protocols and requirements. “We were looking for a partner that could offer future-proof features. For example, we are not yet using some of the newer protocols such as OFTP2, but we know that Axway has them and can provide them quickly and easily when the time comes to do so,” explained Leffray. In addition, TSIM’s EAI and BAM functionalities are a good fit with INERGY’s overall business strategy.
Axway TSIM provides INERGY with monthly reporting on all transactions, including KPIs, and reporting on alerts and errors; the ability to seamlessly on-board partners when needed; and on-demand modification and implementation of mappings.
Exchanging Large CAD Drawings Worldwide
INERGY’s CAD engineering offices and technical branches exchange about 600 large CAD drawings with customers and partners per month. With the upgrade to the new version of Axway TSIM, INERGY also benefits from a Web EDTI/EDI interface enabling large files to be exchanged securely over the Internet from any workstation. This is particularly important for INERGY’s smaller partners, who can’t afford to invest in costly EDI solutions. “We really appreciate the flexibility and simplicity of Axway’s Web EDTI/EDI feature. It saves us money, and it saves our partners money,” concluded Leffray.