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Hydro takes up digitalisation challenge

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Kathy Gibson at Fujitsu Forum, Munich — The first step to digital transformation is consolidation and modernisation, a key part of which is streamlining infrastructure.
The world’s largest integrated aluminium production company, Hydro, has signed a new multi-million-dollar managed infrastructure services agreement with Fujitsu.
The new contract extends an existing European agreement to Brazil, and will run until at least 2022.
Fujitsu already provides IT infrastructure services for Hydro in 40 countries, and takes care of cybersecurity through a 24/7 global security incident response service and secure authentication solutions.
Hans Petter Oya, programme manager: digital strategy at Hydro, explains that the company started its modernisation initiative in 2014, but it wasn’t a successful exercise. “There was a huge satisfaction gap,” he says.
“At that point we had to make some hard decisions: we could cut the cord and stop the whole thing; or start over to achieve a win-win solution with everyone on board.”
Having come up with new metrics needed to support the business, Hydro decided it needed to invest in its infrastructure, which it did with Fujitsu and a managed services contract in Europe.
The results of that have been impressive, with customer satisfaction increasing from 4 to 9.
“The next challenge was to bring the Brazilian operation into line with the rest of the business,” Oya says.
The objectives outlined upfront were for a substantial reduction in costs while implementing a global platform that delivers consistent availability, with minimal threats and vulnerabilities.
The solution was to modernise the infrastructure, deploying Fujitsu servers, storage and networking.
In addition, a dedicated managed security operations centre was set up, with Fujitsu providing all managed services.
The company is also implementing PalmSecure, Fujitsu’s biometric technology for contactless authentication.
“At Hydro we wanted to use digital technologies to increase productivity in operations and support while creating new products and services,” Oya says. “We also needed to improve safety, increase recycling and reduce our carbon footprint.”
This digitalisation ambition was premised on five pillars:
* Robotics and automation — machines to take on manually conducted tasks;
* Advanced analytics — predictive maintenance leveraging machine learning;
* Process digitalisation;
* Commercial — addressing data-driven commercial and sales challenges; and
* New and enhanced value propositions — digital solutions tailored to customers’ needs.
To help it meet these objectives, Fujitsu provides desktop management and end user services; directory, messaging and collaboration; a 24/7 service desk; server and storage hosting; transformation services; professional services, LAN support; a managed security service; and PalmSecure.