French industrial group Valeo is to provide its 30,000-strong internet-connected workforce with Google Apps Premier Edition, as part of a deal supported by Cap Gemini.
The progressive rollout of the new system is giving employees access to a suite of online products, which will increase administrative efficiency and improve collaboration between the 193 Valeo entities in 27 countries.
“We were searching for an innovative way to significantly reduce our office infrastructure costs, while simultaneously improving user collaboration and productivity,” said Andre Gold, Valeo’s technical senior vice-president.
“Our pilot projects demonstrate that this target is achievable,” Gold added.
Valeo is deploying Google Apps, supported by Google’s partner Cap Gemini, in a phased approach throughout 2009.
As a first step, users are being given access to Google sites, online documents, video management and instant messaging, including voice and video chat, in order to improve teamwork.
Valeo focuses on the design, production and sale of components, integrated systems and modules for cars and trucks, and ranks among the world’s top automotive suppliers. The group has 122 plants, 61 R&D centres, 10 distribution platforms and employs around 49,000 people in 27 countries worldwide.
The new system will then offer applications to further enhance the company’s efficiency, such as an enterprise directory and workflow tools to automate administrative processes.
In the final stage, users will benefit from Google mail, calendar, search and online translation solutions to reinforce personal efficiency. They will be able to access the applications from a desktop, laptop or other mobile device.
“The cost savings and innovation made possible by cloud computing help businesses better respond to a global and mobile workforce – especially in today’s difficult economic environment,” said Dave Girouard, president, Google Enterprise.
By John Kennedy