J. Lauritzen outsources the shipping company's central nervous system

The shipping company, J. Lauritzen has made the strategic choice to outsource the operation and further development of the company's central nervous system, the service bus that bands quite central, business-critical applications together.

The partnership with IT Relation related to application management has resulted in highly satisfied users and an IT department that is now doing more business development than quick fixes.

"Our business can basically be compared to a taxi business, where customers order a transport of cargo from A to B and pay accordingly," says IT Manager at J. Lauritzen, Martin Hvass Mørup and elaborates: "Loading and unloading of ships, ordering and billing pilot assistance, settlement with the port authorities, the release of cargo and so on ... all these processes depend on our systems working. If the systems are standing still, the business will be at a standstill."

If our IT machinery and service bus fail to, our business would come to a standstill.

— Martin Hvass Mørup, IT Manager at J. Lauritzen

The service bus is the central nervous system

IT Relation is responsible for the operation of J. Lauritzen’s service bus. It is the glue in the shipping company’s application landscape, moving data between applications internally within the company and to and from external suppliers. As the shipping company's central nervous system, the service bus runs many critical business processes. "If our IT machinery and service bus do not work, our business would come to a standstill," says Martin Hvass Mørup.

Outsourcing as a strategic choice

J. Lauritzen has chosen to be based on outsourcing as a strategic choice, explains Martin Hvass Mørup: "I need people who can both handle operational disciplines and who have insight into application development. At IT Relation I have access to the right people to accomplish a task as quickly as possible and of a very high quality. It is of great value."

Proactive problem solving and satisfied users

Martin Hvass Mørup says, that IT Relation’s proactive and focused approach to daily operations is one of the areas where he has seen IT Relation deliver a very good product, “IT Relation is incredibly good at dealing with problems before they become problems. Much of what we hear about the daily operations is when they have handled something and made a success of it. That is why we very rarely turn to them with something that has gone wrong. In most cases it is them who approach us."

Even the users are happy and satisfied, explains Martin Hvass Mørup: "IT Relation detects and corrects the errors before the users discover them. Our users have experienced improvements and are very satisfied, and here in the IT department, we have got more mental capacity because we do not have to spend time on quick fixes."

A good appreciation of the business

Apart from operations, IT Relation also handle development projects for J. Lauritzen, "IT Relation is also responsible for developing a number of critical, proprietary business applications. It is not off-the-shelf products, but as an example it could be systems for planning and controlling cooling, or cleaning tanks when changing content," says Martin Hvass Mørup, adding, "When we have described a task, we have experienced a very good appreciation of the task at IT relation. We do not have to cut it out in cardboard for them, but we can describe it to them in general terms and still get our message across. The developed code has been of a high quality."

The great ones are not always the best

"Before choosing IT Relation to attend to our application management, we had outsourced to a major global player. At times, it was a tough experience," says Martin Hvass Mørup, adding, "Now we have chosen to outsource all our IT to IT Relation. For this reason IT Relation is our hosting partner, and at the same time they are responsible for our application management. There is an assigned liaison for our entire IT setup, which lightens our working day."

Professionalism and overview

Martin Hvass Mørup is content with the change to a smaller supplier, "IT Relation matches us very well in size and corporate culture. The company has a size which makes it possible to have skilled people who know what they are talking about and have control of the processes  – on the other hand their size still enables them to take immediate action so we can quickly get hold of the right people, clarify issues and get the job done. This applies when we carry out projects and in our daily operations, which are characterised by an incredible degree of professionalism and overview from IT Relation’s side."

J. Lauritzen operates a contemporary fleet of bulk carriers and gas carriers. The shipping company employs a staff of around 1,300 employees at sea and on land, and in addition to the head office in Copenhagen, the company has overseas offices in China, the Philippines, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland and the United States.

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Flemming Jørgensen

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