Long-established healthcare services provider, focusing on the development and manufacture of pharmaceutical products and their preclinical trials. The company was founded back in 1972 and became part of the German group in 2006. It now has over 100 employees and generates an annual turnover of around EUR 6.7 million.
Not every cloud solution is 100% applicable in practice. The difference between a functional cloud and some unreliable IT solution lies in the ability to understand and take account of the real needs and everyday work of employees. The flip side of the coin is the financial savings it can produce. The professional approach of PosAm’s specialists when migrating a company to cloud translates into a model example of a functional and price-effective cloud solution.
The IT infrastructure of the company was ripe for retirement from an IT perspective. Over two dozen physical servers in a heterogeneous environment had a mean age of 7-8 years. This situation caused frequent outages and various incidents that disrupted the smooth workflow. Rebuilding the whole infrastructure became all the more urgent thanks to the planned division of the company. However, the ability to deal with such a complex task internally was hindered by a lack of personnel and investment resources.
Goals and requirements
The customer’s request was clear – to have the IT migrated to the new infrastructure and separate the software licences from the group by the time the company was to be split. The new IT environment had to guarantee functionality, quality and stability while keeping investment costs to a minimum. The offered solution was to include long-term professional care of the entire infrastructure. The company wanted to be free of IT issues so it could concentrate on its own core business without having to increase internal personnel capacities dedicated to caring for IT.
PosAm was entrusted with this demanding mission as it already administered the customer’s end devices and server infrastructure at that time. A thorough knowledge of the environment and its needs, combined with trust founded on the quality of services provided to date, played a key role in this choice.
As a leading Slovak IT company and member of the Slovak Telekom group, PosAm guaranteed the necessary professionality and ability to ensure synergy with its parent company in the provision of comprehensive ICT services. PosAm also boasted some impressive references from establishing large IT infrastructures, also on a cloud base.
There were essentially two ways to resolve the situation in question. To carry out the consolidation and renewal of IT infrastructure in-house, or to move the entire IT to cloud. Economically, this meant an investment model versus an operational model. Once all specifications, requirements and limits were taken into consideration, the customer opted for migration of the entire IT infrastructure to cloud.
Preparation of solution
Implementation of the project was launched in October 2015 and had to be completed by the end of 2015 due to the division of the company. This rigidly set timeframe left no space for lagging in the project and put the pressure on to meet all deadlines from the beginning.
Work commenced with in-depth mapping of existing infrastructure. Based on these inputs, PosAm prepared a proposal of the new architecture and a consolidation plan. Cloud specialists put strong emphasis on the checking and repair of backups so data consistency could be ensured after migration, with continuity and restoration in the case of unforeseen events. The migration itself was planned thoroughly, taking into account how crucial individual types of IT services and data were, as well as the need for user accessibility at different phases of project implementation. As the whole infrastructure was to be situated in a geographically remote location with a far higher volume of “data flow”, it was essential also to increase the capacity of data lines.
Once everything was ready, the necessary IT infrastructure was prepared at a trustworthy and stable cloud services provider (Telekom Cloud). This consisted of seven virtual servers for the information systems (Active Directory, File server, Print Server, Antivirus, WSUS, internal applications, DB Servers, accounting system) and two virtual servers for SAP. In total there were 30 CPU, 100 GB RAM and over 3 TB of disk space. All the prepared data was gradually migrated to this new environment and the whole operation subsequently redirected. Everything was completed by the agreed deadlines and without any senseless downtime.
In addition to the production systems, the customer also uses the cloud to provide mail services and to host MS Office 365. The philosophy of the whole solution necessitated the creation of secure access to the internet, to cloud, and also remote access, which is built on professional solutions from the company Fortinet.
A unique element is that it is the first production SAP system in Slovakia to be located on cloud.
Results and benefits
The customer received a modern, efficient and stable infrastructure for all company information systems, all of which is located in a secure data centre. System availability is on the level of 99.75%, also thanks to the backup of virtual servers and their automatic recovery if any of them has an outage.
The customer received the solution with minimum investment costs and thanks to the ongoing modernisation of components in cloud, it is freed from having to plan future investments into IT modernisation. Furthermore, internal personnel costs for IT also vanish as complete care of IT falls on the shoulders of the provider, which provides professional supervision, administration and support.
In terms of operating costs, the customer no longer has to pay for the electricity to run its own data centre, which also vacates premises that can be used for some other purpose.
Main benefits of the solution
- Migration from 25 physical servers in two server rooms to 9 virtual servers in cloud
- EUR 30 000 saving on investments into software licences