How ING DIRECT Australia Partners for IT Transformation

By Laurence Cruz, for NetApp


A crisis is an opportunity in disguise. ING DIRECT, Australia learned this firsthand when a competing bank Down Under beat them to market with an iPad app. But instead of rolling over, ING DIRECT regrouped, evaluated their options and transformed their IT infrastructure, essentially putting their whole bank in the cloud.


At NetApp Insight 2015, Ben Issa—ING DIRECT, Australia’s head of IT Strategy—tells the dramatic story of the 15-year-old bank’s rapid reinvention, and how partnerships with NetApp, Cisco and Microsoft made possible the project known as “Zero Touch.” By streamlining the development/test-to-production environment using NetApp’s FlexPod and clustered Data ONTAP, ING DIRECT reduced time to market for their products and services by 50 percent.


“We spent probably about two years in research, and it took us some time to find the right organizations to partner with,” Issa says. “Now we can say we’ve gone from 31 or 32 technologies to 10.”


Even more remarkable was the speed with which the company implemented Zero Touch, with the final deployment being successfully completed over a single long weekend.




Issa says he’s excited about NetApp’s vision of a data fabric, and the flexibility and agility it gives to IT. But it’s customers who are the big winners: ING DIRECT can potentially refresh the bank every day with new products and services for their customers to access online, and scheduled service outages are a thing of the past so customers no longer experience interruptions in accessing their services online. That’s why ING DIRECT won the 2015 NetApp Innovation Award in the Asia-Pacific region.


What made NetApp the right solution for ING DIRECT? In a word, says Issa, the company’s culture. “We explored multiple organizations to see who can help us solve our problem,” he says. “Most of them were pushing products, not trying to help us solve the problem. When we worked with NetApp, … I knew I could have confidence to go back to the business and say, ‘We have a solution.’”


Issa continued the conversation with the Tech OnTap podcast.


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