Plotting a course to success
As part of the process, the company connected its Microsoft Dynamics AX applications for finance, controlling and human resources with new systems for terminal and shipping management using IBM Integration Bus Advanced software.
“Many large enterprises around the world rely on Microsoft Dynamics AX software to manage their operations, which gave our decision-makers the confidence that the solution was the ideal fit for Royal Arctic Line,” recalls Kesic. “In addition to robust, best-practice approaches to disciplines such as human resources and financial controlling, the solution gives us the freedom to add analytics capabilities in the future, which allows us to mine our business data to uncover new efficiencies.”
After using customized Microsoft Dynamics AX applications to drive its business for a number of years, Royal Arctic Line wanted to enable easier integration with its new business partner by reducing the amount of customized code. To reduce cost and limit exposure to business risk, the company looked for an expert partner to steer the project.
“It was an easy decision to choose IBM Global Business Services,” says Kesic. “For many years, we have used IBM Power Systems™ servers as the high-performance platform for IBM Integration Bus Advanced, and the support from IBM has never been anything less than excellent. We recently upgraded our server platform to IBM POWER8® processor-based systems, and the IBM team’s responsiveness and dedication throughout that project convinced us that they could deliver.”
Today, IBM Global Business Services is working with Royal Arctic Line to map out and document its core business processes, beginning with the company’s finance department.
“IBM is helping us find more efficient ways of working, and reducing our need for customization in our business systems,” adds Kesic. “The team is always helping us to challenge ourselves with important questions like, ‘Do we really need this customization?’ and: ‘Is there a standard process we could use here instead?’”
When its work with IBM is complete, Royal Arctic Line will obtain the benefit of tauter, more efficient business processes. This end-to-end integration will help the company boost operational efficiency and collaborate seamlessly with Eimskip. In addition, the company will gain the ability to perform system upgrades more effectively.
Kesic continues: “Working with IBM continues to be a very positive experience. The team is proactive, and really took the time to understand our business goals at the beginning of the project. IBM’s global reach and industry perspective are both very valuable benefits, and the IBM team is bringing new ideas that are helping us to drive our transformation effectively.”
Connecting Greenland with valuable mass markets
Through digital transformation, Royal Arctic Line is surging ahead with its partnership with Eimskip, which will ultimately help connect Greenland with worldwide opportunities.
“Our new joint venture with Eimskip will deliver three massive, fuel-efficient container ships to serve the Greenland market, and increase our capacity by a factor of three,” explains Kesic.
“These ships will carry cargo to and from Greenland via Iceland to ports in Europe and North America, which will connect us with mass markets like never before. Without efficient, streamlined processes at the heart of our business, a joint venture of this scale would be practically impossible.”
He continues: “One of the keys to Greenland’s continued economic growth is good access to large markets around the world, and thanks to our work with IBM Global Business Services, we’re doing just that. By increasing our shipping capacity and keeping our rates competitive, businesses in Greenland can thrive—boosting employment, increasing consumer choice and contributing to a happier, wealthier society. For businesses, this means a healthier bottom line, which is great news for the Greenland economy.”
Royal Arctic Line plans to build value-added services around logistics, enabling Greenland to harness its natural resources to promote self-sustaining economic growth.
“Sustainable growth is not just our aspiration for Greenland’s economy—it’s also an important aspiration for our business,” Kesic comments. “As our digital transformation gathers pace, we will become leaner, more productive and more competitive. We want to become so efficient that we can give back our concession to the government and launch an initial public offering. The aim is to continue to improve our services while boosting profitability.”
He adds: “Some of our efficiencies will come from operational cost-savings. IBM has already helped us to reduce our application management expenditure by 30 percent, and we are very interested in migrating our business systems to the IBM Cloud to unlock additional savings.”
With expert support from IBM Global Business Services, Royal Arctic Line is moving Greenland’s economy into the 21st century.
“Our work with IBM and our Microsoft business systems are helping us connect Greenland with markets around the world,” concludes Kesic. “By continuing our close collaboration, we are creating valuable new business opportunities that will support Greenland’s economy for decades to come—and we are excited for what the future holds.”