Greenyard is a global supplier of fresh, frozen and prepared fruit and vegetables headquartered in Belgium. The company has roughly 9,000 employees operating in 23 countries worldwide. Many of the world's largest food retailers count on Greenyard for a steady and high-quality supply of fruit and vegetables to their stores.
- Provides complete visibility across the entire IT estate with a complete and accurate IT inventory, created in real time.
- Simplifies and streamlines the roll out of critical patches and updates, helping to improve overall IT performance and strengthen security.
- Reduces waste, optimises costs and performance, and enables efficient resources allocation.
- Enables centralised management and supports standardisation efforts.
As a global food distributor, Greenyard faces myriad challenges. "The supply chain is uncertain, because we cannot control the weather," said Luc Verbist, CIO at Greenyard. "Additionally, pricing is always fluctuating, particularly as climate change accelerates. We rely on a worldwide network of growers and flexible logistics to match supply with demand." While variables such as the weather and pricing can be impossible to control, ensuring effective collaboration, and standardizing on technologies and processes between locations can help streamline logistics and increase operational efficiency. This leads to cost savings, higher productivity and, ultimately, higher margins - a particularly critical goal in a historically low-margin industry.
However, Greenyard has grown rapidly through acquisition, and its 17 portfolio companies remain independent. Due to geographical and regional differences, collaboration between the various sites and the corporate offices had been relatively limited. Managing more than a dozen ERPs and numerous mail environments was depriving the company of realizing economies of scale, as well. "Standardizing processes and technologies across the organization is essential to support the organization's changing needs moving forward," Verbist said.
"Lansweeper delivers unrivaled insights while eliminating manual, error-prone work, enabling us to quickly and efficiently standardize on best-of-breed technologies and best practices across the enterprise. As a result, we can provide better service to our local IT teams, ensuring they benefit from the most up-to-date tools and solutions."
Luc Verbist, CIO, Greenyard
The First Step: Knowing Their IT
As an essential first step, Greenyard set out to find a solution for creating and maintaining a complete technology asset inventory of all IT, IoT and OT across its portfolio companies. After a Google search and some due diligence, Verbist learned about Lansweeper. Although he evaluated a number of solutions, he determined that Lansweeper was the best choice.
"Lansweeper is relatively easy to roll out, which is important, since the smaller IT teams at many of our subsidiaries lack expertise and resources," Verbist said. "Secondly, since we're a small-margin business, cost was a factor, and Lansweeper offers tremendous value at a reasonable price point."
Cheops Accelerates Lansweeper Implementation
Greenyard enlisted the help of Lansweeper Strategic Partner and leading provider of IT and Business Technology Services, Cheops, to implement the Lansweeper platform on-site across all locations, many of which consist of multiple sites. This enabled complete and accurate technology asset data to be collected and captured in a central database on Azure Cloud.
Cheops collaborates with local IT managers and system engineers, providing guidance for installing and using the Lansweeper platform, along with supporting documentation and training. "Running on virtual machines, Lansweeper collects data at each of the sites, consolidates it, and forwards it to our corporate installation in Azure cloud," said Verbist. "In this way, we gain a comprehensive and centralized view of Greenyard's distributed technology infrastructure."
Provides a Clear View Across the Entire Technology Estate
Verbist's team uses Lansweeper to monitor and maintain a comprehensive inventory of roughly 50,000 IT, OT and IoT assets worldwide. The platform helps them manage maintenance schedules and ensure that all necessary security updates are implemented in a timely manner. "With Lansweeper, we now have a 100% clear view on what we have running across all of our sites," he said, adding that the insight and visibility has been instrumental in helping the company eliminate waste and optimize costs.
For example, after installing Lansweeper, the team discovered 400 more licenses of Microsoft than were needed, due to people leaving the company and local IT teams neglecting to disable machines or eliminate licenses. What's more, Lansweeper uncovered a number of servers that had been sitting idle, wasting resources. "With Lansweeper providing a complete and accurate inventory of our software and hardware assets, we can identify wasteful practices and renegotiate license agreements to optimize IT costs," Verbist said.
"With Lansweeper, we now have a 100% clear view on what we have running across all of our sites. This insight and visibility has been instrumental in helping the company eliminate waste and optimize costs."
Luc Verbist, CIO, Greenyard
Strengthens Security by Uncovering Vulnerability and Eliminating 'Backdoors'
Access to Lansweeper data helps Verbist and his team strengthen security across the organization, as well, by uncovering vulnerabilities that could leave a "backdoor" open for bad actors to initiate malicious activity. "Prior to having an up-to-date IT asset inventory, all we could do was ask our local teams to check for outdated devices and software, and hope they implemented the updates," he said. "With Lansweeper data at our fingertips, we can quickly spot servers and other machines and devices that require patches and updates, and we can ensure those patches and updates are implemented."
Optimizes and Reduces Overall IT Costs
Greenyard now benefits from a global inventory and unified view of all technology assets across the organization, which they can use to reduce waste, optimize costs and performance, and allocate technology resources effectively. For example, the ability to re-negotiate licensing agreements with Microsoft will save the company about 10% in licensing fees. What's more, old, obsolete servers that had been sitting idle will no longer be consuming electricity or taking up rack space.
"Many of our subsidiaries were paying for cloud capacity they didn't need, simply because they forgot to scale down following a spike in activity," Verbist said. "The cloud provider will not warn you about unused resources - you have to proactively scale down. Insights from Lansweeper help us to reduce such needless spending, and optimize our IT environment to meet the needs of the business as they evolve."
Best-of-Breed, Across the Board
In the future, Greenyard plans to integrate Lansweeper with other business-critical systems such as ServiceNow and leverage Lansweeper data for internal reporting. According to Verbist, Lansweeper's ability to integrate seamlessly with other tools in the technology stack, such as PRTG and ServiceDesk, will be helpful as the company continues to streamline and standardize processes and operations.
Lansweeper's integration with PRTG, for example, provides Greenyard with insights into the status, health and performance of their technology assets. "Connecting PRTG to Lansweeper will allow us to generate automatic alerts into our ServiceNow environment," Verbist said. "That way, we can use ServiceNow as an overall dashboard for incident follow-up and change management."
Learn More About Lansweeper Integrations
Finally, according to Verbist, Lansweeper will be instrumental in executing on the company's standardization initiatives, enabling them to spot and replace outdated systems and technologies while ensuring all environments are updated to reflect the new standards. "Lansweeper delivers unrivaled insights while eliminating manual, error-prone work, enabling us to quickly and efficiently standardize on best-of-breed technologies and best practices across the enterprise," he said. "As a result, we can provide better service to our local IT teams, ensuring they benefit from the most up-to-date tools and solutions."