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ABP Food Group are an award-winning supplier of beef and lamb products to retailers, wholesalers and food service providers. With a turnover of €3bn, they employ over 11,000 people across the UK, Ireland and Europe. ABP work hard to ensure their environmental impact is minimal, offering sustainably reared meat from a network of 35,000 farmers. Their approach has received wide recognition and they were the first company to receive quadruple certification from The Carbon Trust.
ABP wanted to increase collaboration across their complex divisional workforce, many of whom had just started working remotely. To maintain their edge in a competitive industry, they also required an updated approach to customer and supplier communication. The main obstacle to such change was ABP’s large legacy estate, which was unable to fully support modern collaboration, communication and remote working practices.
ABP’s IT team decided to modernise the estate with Microsoft 365 (M365), a secure cloud-based productivity suite that includes collaborative software. For help adopting this new solution, ABP approached Bytes – their trusted partner for IT services.
The IT team needed to build a business case for this change, so Bytes deployed their Commercial Advisory Service (CAS). Through workshops and data from the CAS analytics tool, Bytes gained a strong understanding of ABP’s business requirements across multiple divisions and built a commercial model that maximised the value of M365. This enabled ABP to articulate the benefits of M365 and approve the business case with confidence.
To support the adoption of M365, Bytes used their FastTrack service. This consisted of expert guidance and technical workshops with Bytes’ Cloud Solutions team, who held a series of sessions with ABP to help them scope requirements and prepare their architecture for M365, as well as remediate any issues found during deployment.
Adopting M365 enabled ABP to rollout Teams, which boosts collaboration with messaging, calling, video conferencing and file sharing capabilities. ABP also gained Outlook, a modern emailing solution with calendar and task management features, which replaced their legacy Lotus Notes software.
To help ABP define security around M365, Bytes provided extensive Cyber Consultancy sessions and supported their implementation of Microsoft Enterprise Mobility & Security (EMS). This platform provides intelligent protection for on and offsite users, using identity and device management tools such as Intune to secure endpoints.
ABP now support greater collaboration across their workforce. Solutions such as Teams and Outlook have brought multiple divisions together, removing barriers to communication for onsite and remote users, as well as with customers. Microsoft EMS adds extra peace of mind with robust security, ensuring users can work safely anywhere, on any device.
Bytes’ FastTrack, CAS and Cyber Consultancy services were key to the transformation, providing ABP with workshops and technical guidance delivered by Bytes’ Cloud Solutions, Cloud Support and Security professionals. ABP plan to build on their success with M365 and will work with Bytes to adopt further cloud services in the future.
John Armstrong | Group IT Director | ABP Food Group
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