With a workforce of around 200,000 people, SF Express is the largest logistics company in China. They pride themselves on delivering packages within a day.
Initially approaching ThoughtWorks as known technology specialists in the market, the founder of SF Express had an idea to build an online sharing community. The community would be a place where people could donate goods they no longer need to non-profit organisations (NGO’s). SF Express planned to contribute in the way they knew best: by shipping donated goods to the various locations at no charge.
After successfully launching their online community, SF Express wanted to partner once again with ThoughtWorks: this time to scale their business to the global marketplace. To achieve this, they needed to rethink their entire IT infrastructure. The added challenge: they wanted to do this trying all new technology.
It was clear early on that revamping the IT infrastructure for a logistics company would be a unique challenge. There are 130,000 delivery people working for SF Express; each employee carries a Hand Held Terminal (HHT) to complete the transaction. The device needed to work in China’s diverse weather conditions - a device that would scan in all types of altitude and season. Building a fifth-generation Android platform, and working with hardware - building a device that was compatible with the software.
With a partnership now spanning three years, ThoughtWorks has truly become a strategic innovation partner to SF Express. Working in tandem in this way has given both parties a deep understanding of how each works - achieving objectives, and driving innovation.