ONE chooses Google Cloud and SAP to compete in ‘digital shipping’ era

Ruma Balasubramanian of Google Cloud

Ocean Network Express (ONE), which owns a fleet of containerships, is working with Google Cloud to advance its digital transformation and data cloud strategy.

The self-styled ‘next-generation shipping company’ aims to enhance its operational efficiency by running its mission-critical SAP systems on Google Cloud, unlocking business insights and accelerating time to insight leveraging data analytics services like BigQuery, and enhancing employee collaboration with Google Workspace.

Scaling a robust SAP ERP system hosted in Google Cloud

As a global container shipping company, ONE handles transactions with as many as 14,000 customers across 63 countries every day. To manage these, ONE previously relied on an SAP accounting system hosted locally in each country on its legacy cloud platform.

To modernise its systems, ONE migrated to an SAP S/4HANA enterprise resource planning (ERP) finance software hosted on Google Cloud. Shifting from its on-premise infrastructure to the public cloud gives ONE the ability to scale its ERP systems up and down to meet changes in customer demands and data volumes.

ONE is also integrating its SAP system with Google Cloud’s data analytics solutions to gain a unified and real-time view of data across its global organisation, thereby enabling the next-generation shipping company to better predict demand in the supply chain and make business decisions faster.

Advancing a robust data cloud strategy

Plans to modernise its legacy data environment with a data lake using BigQuery are also underway and are expected to be completed by third-quarter of 2021. This will enable ONE to consolidate and analyse data from its SAP ERP and other data sources to generate even more business value from its data and advance ONE’s competitive advantage in the market.

“Modernising our legacy infrastructure requires a strategic rethink of the way internal data is captured and processed at all levels of the company. By accelerating the use of data analytics to enhance operational efficiencies and predict, ONE can better meet changes in customer demands and data volumes and make business decisions faster.

Our move to Google Cloud is a realisation of a centralised and intelligent system that allows us to act on trusted and up-to-date information to shape our data cloud strategy,” says Kosuke Wada, senior vice president at ONE.

Adopting Google workspace across the organisation to stay agile

The COVID-19 pandemic amplified the importance of shipping to the smooth flow of raw materials, fuel, food, and medical supplies. From the get go, ONE was able to minimise the impact of office closures and travel restrictions on its customers by using Google Workspace, in particular using Gmail and Google Meet to stay connected with customers, vendors, and colleagues, whether they were working remotely or in the office.

Already in the process of rolling Google Workspace out to its 8,000-people employee base, ONE is able to deliver seamless customer service from any device and ensure prompt responses to sales inquiries from shippers to the tight coordination of cargo between ports and countries.

ONE is also able to protect its employee’s accounts and company data by enabling security features such as two-step verification on Google Workspace. Furthermore, administrators use Cloud Identity Access Management to define access to work data on Google accounts ensuring data is kept securely on company owned devices and affording flexibility to users when required.

“ONE is a testament to what enterprises can achieve when they embrace the Cloud to modernise and future-proof their business. Their digital transformation with Google Cloud will enable them to measurably improve the quality of their decisions, crunch vast quantities of data to achieve unprecedented clarity, and improve employee collaboration in this ever-evolving work environment,” says Ruma Balasubramanian, managing director for Google Cloud in Southeast Asia.

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