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Unilever Now Cloud-Only Enterprise


Global consumer goods manufacturer Unilever recently achieved its goal to become a cloud-only enterprise – an endeavor made possible by its collaborative efforts with tech titans Accenture and Microsoft.

Working with the Accenture-Microsoft joint venture Avanade, Unilever was able to transform its digital setup in eighteen months without any major disruptions to its operations. 

The company currently uses Azure as its main cloud platform and it has been a great help in accelerating product launches, improving operational efficiency throughout the organization, and has significantly enhanced its customer service capabilities.

But streamlining operational processes is not the only benefit that Unilever receives from going the cloud-only route. The company’s shift to Azure is in keeping with its commitment to sustainability as it enables it to achieve its goal of reducing carbon emissions.

Likewise, having an agile digital core performing at its peak gives Unilever a greater amount of computing power with which to further improve the way it works. Indeed, this cloud-only approach is expected to improve the company’s corporate resilience even as it strengthens security and enhances its control of relevant IT environments.

A Laudable Move

For Unilever’s chief enterprise and technology officer Steve McCrystal, working with Accenture and Microsoft on the company’s digital transformation has improved the way the company responds to the evolving needs of consumers throughout the world. Indeed, as a data-driven organization, Unilever can now allocate its resources more effectively in order to determine what’s driving growth. This, in turn, allows it to innovate and bring a fresh slew of products and services faster to global markets.

For her part, Accenture senior managing director Nicole van Det who is also the global account lead for Unilever opines that the company did the right thing in order to accelerate its growth and vastly improve its capacity for innovation. As she puts it, business resilience is best achieved via total enterprise reinvention with the cloud at its core; this is something that Unilever managed to do successfully in just over a year.

Likewise, Microsoft’s chief commercial officer and executive vice-president Judson Althoff is pleased with how Unilever’s digital transformation turned out thanks to its collaboration with his company and Accenture. With Microsoft Azure serving as the basis of the Unilever cloud, the company’s end-to-end digitization will now drive innovation faster throughout the organization. At the same time, tools like Azure OpenAI Service ensures that Unilever can do more and empower itself toward more resilient growth.

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