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The proud Danish manufacturer of farm supplies, Danish Agro, dates back to 1901 and surely understands how to farm, cultivate, and grow a profit. Today, the parent company consists of more than 110 companies both in Denmark and abroad and totals more than 5000 employees. Holding up all this is the support of a complex IT infrastructure. However, Danish Agro’s IT Operations Manager, Steen Holst, has full control and operates by the notion that complex IT requires uncomplicates solutions. 

Written in February 2019

We have had the pleasure of working together with Steen and Danish Agro for many years. We have watched them grow and they have surely been part of our growth as well. This is particularly true when it comes to the development of our services, which were in fact created to bring down the complexity and to provide modern organization of the constant changes in the IT world.

Danish Agro’s vision expresses it clearly: “We literally farm value. All our decisions are made with that at the forefront.” That is also the case when it comes to IT solutions. Here, there is no IT just for the sake of having the IT. The infrastructure must prove its value, always. And if you listen to Steen, you will understand why: “Over the past three years, we have purchased one company a month on average. That also means that our group’s IT is subject to constant expansion and this is where we have edgemo’s (now Danoffice IT) services along for the ride.”

We Depend on Our Partners

In our group’s IT division, we have 12 IT knowledgeable employees – the powerful dozen. “We are adding new companies to our group’s IT setup and our datacenter on an ongoing basis. But we do not do so until it makes sense, for instance when they are looking at a large investment in their own data center. The local presence is important, wherefore, the local IT employees usually maintain their role – sometimes with a bit more business-minded focus, in that they are relieved of certain tasks through us managing the group IT. 

We are on a great big journey, but we are in a good place with it all now. One key element that had led us there is the realization that we cannot be the best at everything. Overall, we are predisposed to being dependent on our partnerships in that our partnerships make us stronger.” 

”New companies added to our group IT are provided several standard services. Some of these services are provided by edgemo (now Danoffice IT). We have all our devices delivered by device as a service, PC2go, which also has the roll-out from our SCCM. The automation and packaging of our applications are run through SOFT2go and all our unit management is run through device management service. We have one employee in charge of SCCM, but only serving as the architect – they run the operations for us.”

Things Are Connected

Steen has worked with us - even before he joined Danish Agro. As such, we have influenced each other’s development: “It all started when we needed operational support for a bit of Microsoft, SQL, Citrix, etc. Thereafter, we moved on to automation, packaging, and SCCM, and finally, we jumped on a very early version of SOFT2go. Naively, we believed that we could handle it ourselves, however, we had few resources and we were a bit too late in the game. And I think they were too. In fact, the service did not even have a name yet. But again, they were our partners and they were on to something. It still appears to be a journey for them, from the outside looking in. They could use a few people in their Device Management, but it is up and running now. They did not get consumed by their own success, but like everyone else, they need more hands. However, I am very pleased with their approach to the services. Things are connected and that is what I like. You can buy it all or you can buy individual services. It is very flexible.” In hindsight, Steen believes that the aligned growth was well worth it. “We were along for the ride from the very beginning and we are in a good place now. That said, we did need to learn that we should not do everything ourselves so we have been part of a work in progress on both sides.”  

Powerful Chemistry

Just as Steen, we also place great value on our relationships. Steen brought us into Danish Agro and the model applied is collaboration with a capital C. “I knew them perfectly well and they probably had the best Citrix consultants in the country. We went live with Citrix, HP, VMware, etc. and we had a powerful chemistry with our talented Business Relationship Manager, Mette Larsen, which was truly worth moving forward with,” Steen says and adds: “Yes, they were small and new, but I could tell early on that they had a different approach to their customers than other companies did. They are extremely down to earth”.

An Agreement is (More than Just) an Agreement

A collaboration is founded on the ability to rely on each other. Yet, there is more between heaven and earth than contract papers. “Complying with an SLA is just half the job,” Steen states. “We put pressure on edgemo and they get the job done. They go the extra mile. And that is a result of more than just the SLA. It is about culture. We experience a can-do attitude with them. You see that other places, but with them, it is sincere and we are given great attention. You see that all the way around, down to Mette making the effort to stop by when she is passing by and bringing us cake! You do not get that other places. The ”let’s keep things a bit chill” attitude is what it is. They are not too fancy and that is the attitude of Jutland which feels good.”


They Cannot Hide It

As several customers have reported, we are one community and you experience that for yourself with them. Steen also remembers the first time he visited the new Delta 8. “No matter how much you may want to hide it, it is reflected in their agility within the company and with the customers as well. They are very easy-going and transparent. When I visited their new office, I was of course met by Mette Larsen when I arrived. In the beginning of Mette’s tour, we passed by the office of the CEO and you could just tell that he was proud. In fact, he stood up and came along for the tour and was talking to me the whole way. You do not get that anywhere else. Nobody is unapproachable. They are human and straight-forward,” Steen Holst, IT Operations Manager at Danish Agro, concludes.

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