Del Monte Migrates IT to the Cloud

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Del Monte Migrates IT to the Cloud

By Dan Ochwat - 09/01/2019

Accenture’s standardized, automated platform is expected to facilitate a seamless transition

Chad Anderson, Del Monte Foods VP and CIO

In a move that took less than four months, Del Monte Foods streamlined its IT operations and migrated them to the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud, immediately improving cybersecurity and internal communication, according to the manufacturer. The platform puts the department in a position to explore AI, IoT and other cloud-based tools that previously weren’t available to them.

Del Monte worked with Accenture, New York, and its Accenture Cloud Platform, which relies on automated software and migration tools to execute the transition and support an end-to-end managed cloud framework for the Walnut Creek, California-based manufacturer. In all, Del Monte migrated more than 200 servers to the cloud.

The process was so seamless that nobody noticed the move, says Chad Anderson, vice president and chief information officer of Del Monte. Anderson says switching to a standardized, automated platform improved cybersecurity operations and reduced costs around having to send staff out to physically replace hard drives and infrastructure.

As an IT initiative, the benefits are primarily seen on the back end, Anderson says. “Our network teams and our server teams are communicating better because they have more standardized ways of working and more automation tools,” he says.

Accenture’s lead on the project was Kishore Durg, senior managing director, Accenture Cloud for Technology Services.

The benefit of a cloud platform is that “it allows for a scalable, upgradable, monitored and managed cloud infrastructure environment,” Durg says. The platform provides Del Monte Foods with new tools that respond to consumer and market demands at scale and speed.

“It means that the business can operate in a flexible and dynamic way as the company can now scale operations up and down as needed and as guided by metrics and performance benchmarking,” Durg says.

For example, if Anderson needs a new server tomorrow, he can pick one out on his mobile device and have it up and running in 10 minutes. “It’s incredibly powerful for me to basically stand up or decommission systems because it’s that flexible and that’s where you only pay for what you use,” Anderson says.

Kishore Durg, Accenture Cloud for Technology Services senior managing director

By moving away from physical servers and solely paying for infrastructure and the cloud computing power it needs, when it needs it, the company no longer has to make significant capital investments like before, Durg says.

After the platform settles in, the next steps include exploring and evaluating new tools in the Amazon and AWS ecosystem such as cloud-based analytics tools, and AI and IoT technologies. Anderson says they’re able to do testing and disaster recovery in different ways now, too, so Del Monte will explore where they can take advantage of that.

Offering advice around the transition, Anderson warns of skeletons in the closet. “Some of the [old] systems had been around for 15 years and nobody has the history on some of these systems anymore,” he says. “They’ve been sitting there static for a long time and they kind of work, and nobody really knows why they work, and some of those things can really bite you.”

Del Monte had a migration approach that began with moving the forgotten systems first, and then going system by system – “almost treating it like each one was its own mini go-live,” Anderson says.

Other tips were to halt all other projects and handle the transition at once. Durg adds that time is of the essence for packaged foods companies. “You can’t ask fresh food to wait while you take your time transforming the supporting technology,” he says.