Case Study: Major Global Fortune 500 Pharmaceutical Agro-Services Company
Ricoh IT Services delivers a smooth Sitecore migration — unifying 200+ disparate websites across the globe
About the customer
This major multinational Fortune 500 company is one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. Its agro-services division provides a wide range of solutions to enhance crop production — from herbicides and fungicides to insecticides and seed treatments. Based in Europe, the company has more than 20,000 employees throughout the world and reports more than €40 billion in revenue.
Hundreds of websites that did not adhere to corporate brand standards
Lack of governance across websites
Desire to remedy brand inconsistency by migrating to Sitecore® CMS
Lack of Sitecore expertise among many web development agencies
The company had more than 200 corporate and marketing websites across the globe developed using a variety of CMS platforms — with no brand consistency and governance from site to site. The company had corporate brand standards, but the regional differences throughout the world required some leeway to properly convey the company's strength and message to local audiences. The marketing staff throughout the company's global locations contracted with more than two dozen web development agencies to create their respective websites — resulting in a disparate look and feel globally.
To address this inconsistency, the pharmaceutical company conducted research and identified Sitecore® CMS as the platform that would best enable robust functionality, unified design standards globally and flexibility to accommodate regional differences. With Sitecore, the company could house an unlimited number of websites in one instance and each site can have a different look and feel, different functionality — while adhering to brand standards and sharing a foundational level code. The company just needed to find the right partner for the migration — and it was a crowded field.
There were many web development groups that touted expertise in Sitecore. However, far too often, companies were unhappy with their Sitecore implementations because web development agencies lacked the high level of expertise to properly leverage the platform.
How We Did It
We created a dashboard that probes each site and generates a report on its health that we provide to the company — so they don't have to devote internal resources to it.
Conveyed our decade of expertise in Sitecore CMS
Conducted a trial in the U.S. that led to global implementation
Leveraged Sitecore functionality for standard and customized features
Dedicated environment monitoring, server patch maintenance
For more than a decade, Ricoh IT Services had built its expertise in Sitecore CMS primarily by rescuing companies with unsuccessful implementations. For this F500 pharmaceutical company, we had the opportunity to showcase our ability to implement Sitecore from start to finish — without performing a rescue mission.
After replying to the company's RFP for the Sitecore implementation, we were called to the company's European headquarters to answer very pointed questions. They wanted to learn if we could handle the intricacies of running an infrastructure as big as theirs — and our subject matter expert had all the right answers. So much so, they awarded us the business to develop a departmental website locally in the U.S. and once successful, we took on the entire global Sitecore implementation.
To ensure success on such a large scale, we worked with the company's many stakeholders to develop collaborative processes for handling incidents, new project requests, escalations and maintenance. We leveraged Sitecore's customization capabilities to enable compliance and governance, and enlisted Sitecore's pipeline architecture to ensure efficient, organized code deployments. We used Sitecore's custom patching configuration system to add and enhance specific feature sets. Additionally, we extended the default Sitecore logging functionalities to store error information in a central database repository to simplify identifying recurring issues.
We also built a custom integration for real-time threat detection and analysis. In addition, we simplified the deployment processes to the entire infrastructure, and created and customized a support dashboard for all site-related support requests. Furthermore, we continually monitored the dedicated environment, reviewing log files, hardware, network and application performance, as well as performed monthly server patch maintenance.
Brand consistency and governance across 200+ websites
Greater control to onboard new sites quickly
Stable, validated infrastructure that meets technological standards
Sitecore implementation done right the first time
Over the course of five years, we have successfully migrated and hosted more than 200 of the company's websites to Sitecore in our dedicated co-located environment. This powerful CMS platform allows the company's marketing professionals to update their websites on their own — but we are now the gatekeepers that ensure any changes are aligned with the corporate brand standards. As a result, there's brand consistency and governance throughout all of its websites. If a new location opens, there are now controls to onboard a new website quickly and ensure it is compliant with brand standards.
With Ricoh IT Services managing the Sitecore infrastructure, everything is now stable, validated and conforms with technological standards. As locations open or close around the world, the company now has a trusted partner for ongoing migration of their global corporate and marketing brands. With Ricoh IT Services as the global Sitecore manager for the company, any attempt to violate brand standards by web developers or marketing staff will be caught by the team and corrected.
Furthermore, the company had a Sitecore implementation that was done right the first time — no rescue needed. The company avoided the extended timeline, additional costs and headaches that come when a development agency fails to deliver.