Frozen Food Wholesaler

Enterprise Architecture Delivery – Interim CTO Service Delivery

“Searchlight were able to shine a light on the critical issues, priorities and areas of investment required to maintain current operational performance while investing in establishing a scaleable infrastructure in line with our on-going business transformation program. Pragmatic delivery combined with experience and knowledge to define our road map and ensure the right things were delivered …” Program Director, Wholesaler


The Client is a distribution company supplying food, drink & other products mainly to the catering (or ‘foodservice’) industry in many countries, including the UK & France. It provides wholesale & contract logistical services to corporate, national & independent channels. The Client had an ageing technology landscape that was undergoing a medium-term refresh within an IT transformation program, however it required a clearer strategy to link business as usual and the IT transformation program.

The Challenge

  • The underlying infrastructure had not seen significant investment, and the main operational focus was constantly directed at performance & recovery across the technology stack from the presentation layer down to the network
  • Although an IT transformation program would deliver elements of change in the medium-term, it wasn’t clear how the technology change road- map would maintain business-as-usual
  • Some key challenges & issues were being experienced associated with the performance of the messaging layer across the operating business units resulting in frequent outages; delivery of a key online ordering solution to corporate customers was delayed as the solution did not return the performance or scalability required

Searchlight Role

  • Searchlight initially provided interim CTO thought leadership to review the overall technology stack and create a recommendation of the priority areas for investment from network, database, application & presentation layer
  • Searchlight then focused on resolving the 2 primary technology initiatives impacting the operation
  • Searchlight optimised the middleware solution to tune the performance of the solution
  • Searchlight modified the online procurement solution architecture to enable the solution to scale to accommodate capability for next 1-2 years

Value and Benefit Delivered

  • Two business critical issues were resolved that had been impacting the operation on a daily basis
  • A prioritised view was established to define what technology components needed to be refreshed and which could await a refresh with a subsequent initiative
  • A review & proper definition of the technical approach to delivering the IT transformation initiative, working along side both software providers and system integrators
  • Line management support provided for the in-house team, coaching & supporting the CIO to reshape the team to meet the current operating environment