How a Century-Old Spirits and Wine Company Became an Apps Company

It’s imperative for every company to now be an apps company. This is true no matter its industry, age, or size. Take Brown-Forman. Founded in 1870, its portfolio features many well-known brands, such as Southern Comfort and Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey. With four-thousand global employees and 60% of its business now taking place outside of the United States, Brown-Forman recognized that custom apps built with next-generation technology were the way to go to connect and support its workforce.

Here are four keys to Brown-Forman’s evolution into an apps company:

1. Apps are built on a cloud platform.

Brown-Forman needed to build on a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) that would permit its applications to work globally, in any language, on any device, and be mobile. The Salesforce App Cloud checked the box for everything. Although Brown-Forman has grown and continues to grow, employees have been brought closer. The company’s custom corporate intranet, My B-F, is built on App Cloud and serves as a central hub for information and collaboration, no matter where in the world a team member is.

2. Apps are released fast.

Brown-Forman leveraged App Cloud to replace 50 or 60 apps very quickly. There is a consistency to how the apps are viewed, accessed, and used, so employees intuitively understand how to work in them and don’t require special training. Plus, the apps are mobile. These apps are also easily modified to fit unique country requests, for example, if they need a special feature for Poland or Germany, updates take minutes, not weeks.

3. Developers can build in any language.

Before moving its app development to a cloud platform, Brown-Forman first ran the decision it by its developers. Their unanimous choice was App Cloud, because of its ease of use and the way it integrates with everything else. Now the company’s Java developers and C developers can collaborate and share their knowledge and toolsets with each other.

4. Business is the #1 focus of IT.

Brown-Forman’s IT department is quick to recognize that the company’s focus is to sell and market spirits, and IT needs to assist in any way it can. With App Cloud, Brown-Forman no longer has to worry about servers, infrastructure, and tiered architecture. Instead IT can show its value by building custom apps that move the business forward and give it a competitive advantage.

Today, every company needs to be an apps company. How can you steer your IT organization towards this new horizon, and deliver the digital experiences that will differentiate your enterprise? Register today for this free webinar to learn how and hear more of Brown-Forman’s story.

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