IBM Software Travel and TransportationCollaboration Solutions Blue Water Shipping removes the barriers to effective collaboration Embarking on a journey towards improved information sharing with IBM Connections and IBM Lotus Notes Established in Esbjerg, Denmark in 1972, Blue Water Shipping offers freight solutions by road, rail, sea and air through a network of offices, Overview agents and partners across the world. The company also provides a The need wide range of value-added services including customised IT solutions. Blue Water Shipping, an international Employing approximately 1,000 people, Blue Water Shipping currently transportation company, wanted to find an alternative to email for sharing has offices in 29 countries. information between employees, to help encourage new, more effective ways of Challenges of sharing information working. The geographical scope covered by Blue Water Shipping means that The solution many of its projects involve numerous team members and stakeholders The company selected IBM® in various countries. Until recently, employees relied on email to share Connections software, a social networking platform that enables vital documents, leading to confusion over version control and a lack of boundary-free collaboration, integrated transparency about which users had viewed which files. with the company’s existing IBM Lotus Notes® and Domino® environment. Kim D. la Cour, IT Manager at Blue Water Shipping, explains: “The The benefit nature of our business means that our employees often need to share Helps boost employee productivity and information across large distances, rather than discussing things face- encourages innovation. Reduces email to-face. For example, a typical project might be to move an oil rig from backlog, saving time and contributing to better version control. Capitalises on the the coast of Singapore to the Caspian Sea. Usually, this would involve growing importance of social networking. hundreds of emails circulating files between the people involved, and complex spreadsheets to keep track of data. There was always the risk of multiple versions emerging and confusion over who had seen a document. We wanted to be proactive about finding a better way to collaborate.” Considering the options The Blue Water Shipping IT team recognised that it could capitalise on the growing popularity and importance of social networking to embed new ways of working into its communication processes. The company looked at surveys of the various collaboration solutions on the market, and concluded that IBM Connections was the best option for enterprise-grade social networking software, due to its exceptional range of functionality and its compatibility with the company’s existing IBM environment.
IBM Software Travel and TransportationCollaboration Solutions “It is important to us to keep up with current trends,” comments Kim la Cour. “A new generation is entering the company, so it made Solution components sense for us to look at what would appeal to them. After looking at Software the options, we decided that IBM Connections was the best fit for our • IBM® Connections needs, and would also integrate seamlessly with our IBM Lotus Notes • IBM Lotus Domino® • IBM Lotus Notes® and Domino environment.” • OnTime Social – a Group Calendar for IBM Connections Blue Water Shipping engaged IBM Premier Business Partner IBM Business Partner IntraVision ApS to help deploy IBM Connections, an open social • IntraVision ApS platform designed to help people engage with networks of expertise within the company. As a first stage, the solution is being tested by the IT team, which uses the solution for its helpdesk, creating wikis to share important information. “We have worked with IntraVision before and have a good relationship with them, so they were the natural choice to help us with this project,” says Kim la Cour. “We are still in the early stages, but ultimately, we want all our employees to be able to set up their own communities to share information. In testing, we have already seen most of our IT team using IBM Connections instead of sending group emails, which was a key aim for us.” Encouraging company-wide adoption Blue Water Shipping is confident that the strong links with social networking will mean that many younger employees pick up the IBM Connections solution with enthusiasm. At the same time, the company recognises that a challenge may lie in getting the older generation to adopt the new solution. “As with all big changes to the way people work, we are expecting to encounter some challenges during the transition period,” comments Kim la Cour. “Luckily, IBM and IntraVision are helping us put together a strategy to effectively support all our employees in getting the best out of the software. With them behind us, we believe that in the long term, the benefits will be worth it!” Seeing the difference Once the implementation of IBM Connections is complete, Blue Water Shipping expects to see a significant difference in the way employees share information across the company. The largest immediate effect will be to dramatically reduce the volume of emails employees need to manage every day. The solution should also help with version control of documents.
IBM Software Travel and TransportationCollaboration Solutions “Using IBM Connections, our employees will be able to share a file with their colleagues instantly, without resorting to group emails that “We feel that IBM can cross in cyber space and result in multiple versions of the same Connections could document,” says Kim la Cour. “This will save huge amounts of time introduce a brand new and boost productivity. It will also help us formalise our approval processes by making it easier to ensure that everyone who needs to see way of thinking for Blue a document has done so before it moves to the next stage.” Water Shipping – it is our first step towards By making it easier for employees to collaborate, Blue Water Shipping hopes that IBM Connections will foster innovation and lay the removing the barriers to groundwork for future developments. La Cour concludes: “We feel collaboration.” that IBM Connections could introduce a brand new way of thinking for Blue Water Shipping – it is our first step towards removing the barriers — Kim D. la Cour, IT Manager, Blue Water to collaboration. Shipping “In the future, for example, we intend to enable employees to access files via their iPhone or iPad devices, which should be more secure and effective than storing them on portable hard drives. Even though we anticipate some growing pains, IBM Connections has the potential to transform our business.” About IntraVision ApS IntraVision ApS offers social business and collaboration consulting and solutions. It is an IBM Premier Business Partner committed to helping companies improve the way their employees collaborate. The company works with all IBM products in this area, with a focus on IBM Lotus Notes and Domino, IBM Lotus Traveler, IBM Connections and IBM Sametime®. The company has also developed the OnTime Scheduling Suite, which has more than 450,000 users worldwide. To learn more about products, services and solutions from IntraVision, please visit www.intravision.dk For more information To learn more about IBM Collaboration Solutions, contact your IBM sales representative or IBM Business Partner, or visit us at: ibm.com/software/lotus/products/connections