Amoria Bond - Cloud Computing Case Study
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Post on 19-May-2015
DESCRIPTIONQuest Cloud Solutions Ltd's Cloud Computing Case Study - Amoria Bond, an Executive Search Consultancy firm spanning several countries and continents, utilise the Quest Cloud platform for their entire IT provision. Read the Cloud Computing Case Study for more information.
1. Amoria Bond A Global, Multi-Office Executive Search Company Case Study: How a Cloud Computing Solution Provided a Resilient, Redundant, Secure and Highly Available IT Platform for 80 Users over 4 Offices Company Background AmoriaBond, a multinational, multiaward-winning Recruitment and Executive Search Services firm, provides specialist and bespoke contract/freelance and permanent recruitment services into a number of impressive private sector clients, specialising in IT and IT Management, Banking and Finance, Engineering and Power, and SAP/ERP sectors. Clients include household names, multinational retailers, and SAP. The company is listed in the Recruiter FAST 50 list as a result of their rapid expansion. The company commenced trading in 2006 and engaged Quest to provide and manage their IT platform. Quest has seen the company grow from the 5 user firm it started out as to the multinational brand it has become; the company now employs around 90 members of staff spread across multiple offices, including Manchester (Head Office), London, Amsterdam, Cologne, and Singapore.Existing IT Solution Amoria Bond went through a number of phases with their IT thanks to their incredibly impressive growth. Following multiple upgrades and server rollouts, the infrastructure at 60 users included Microsoft Windows File Servers, Terminal Servers, an Exchange Server, and a Microsoft SQL Database Server. Applications used were Microsoft Office, generic day-to-day office applications, and their recruitment database, RDB ProNet. At 60 users, and two new offices on the cards, the decision was made to move to the cloud as too much strain was being placed upon the Manchester connections, and the existing infrastructure offered little in terms of office survivability, resilience, or redundancy.and highly available to ensure maximum productivity and profitability. Remote/home working was already offered, but felt clunky due to the huge strain the additional offices were placing on the Manchester office connection. Data redundancy was of utmost importance as the company relies heavily upon their recruitment data to make their tight deadlines. Security, Backup, and Disaster Recovery Planning Amoria Bonds database is the companys lifeblood and incredibly valuable to them, but also to their competitors. Industrial espionage is a real concern and therefore they needed a solution that would be very well protected both physically and virtually. In addition to this, the solution needed to account for a disaster recovery plan if the data was to become corrupt or sabotaged. Connectivity and Bandwidth The existing offices were already straining the connections into the Manchester Head Office; with two new offices on the cards, a solution which would remove that strain was needed. Scalability, including Hardware & Software Upgrades Thanks to their substantial growth, Amoria Bond had already been through a number of hardware and software upgrades; Quest had provided them with a recent traditional IT proposal which allowed for additional growth; however it came in at over 120k over three years and required substantial upfront investment. Amoria Bond wanted a solution that would scale with their business without the need for future-proofing their hardware and software purchases upfront.Requirements and Primary Concerns After a detailed discussion with the business, including the Management Team and the Users, Quest Cloud Solutions Ltd identified four key areas of concern that the company had in mind for the new system; Resilience, Redundancy, and Availability Given that Amoria Bond works in the fast-paced recruitment sector, the company knew they needed an IT platform that would be resilient against hardware failure,Our Solution The proposed solution effectively replicated Amoria Bonds existing infrastructure as detailed previously, but with cloud-based Virtual Private Servers (VPS) rather than physical hardware. 2. Resilience, Redundancy, and Availability Utilising the Quest Cloud platform meant that the solution would be highly available, making use of the datacentres redundant power, resilient and redundant super-fast Internet connectivity, and state-of-the-art fire suppression technology. Incredibly smart resilience features within the VMware virtualisation platform meant that each VPS would draw its computing resources from a series of physical host servers; as a result, the VPS would be protected against physical host server failure; if one of the physical host servers in the cloud platform started to fail, monitoring tools within VMware would move the VPS to another functioning server to ensure it kept running. A RAID configuration was used for the data storage in Quests Storage Area Network (SAN), ensuring a high level of data resilience and an efficient read/write speed.Terminal Email Server Server (VM) (VM)Internet ConnectionFile Database Server/ Server Domain (VM) Controller (VM) Internet ConnectionHead Office (Manchester) London Office #1London Office #2Scalability, including Hardware & Software Upgrades A benefit of using virtualisation and VPS technology was that the VPS could be upgraded on-the-fly as and when needed, without the need for CAPEX, providing a truly scalable solution that would grow and shrink with the business. In addition, the company would now benefit from usage-based licensing, meaning Microsoft licensing would receive free rolling upgrades as and when desired by the business, with the hardware upgraded when needed.Benefits to the CompanyQuest CloudInternet ConnectionService Providers (ISPs); this provides the cloud platform with resilient and redundant bandwidth and lightning-fast connectivity. As a result of hosting the IT platform in the Quest Cloud network, users at all offices would now connect to the cloud platform via their own offices connections.Internet ConnectionSingapore Office Utilising WAN Acceleration Technology here and in the Quest Cloud Platform *Further explained in the Benefits to the Company SectionSecurity, Backup, and Disaster Recovery Planning The cloud solution proposed to the client included an ITrelated backup plan through the use of Microsofts Shadow Copy, which meant the system would take snap-shots of the system at regular intervals. This would allow users to go back in time and manually retrieve individually deleted and/or modified files, up to around 30 days previously, as well as provide the company as a whole with the ability to restore to one of many potential restore points following a major issue. Connectivity and Bandwidth The connectivity network within the Datacentre provides the Quest Cloud platform with access to two separate 10 Gigabit networks, provided by two different InternetThe successful and well-planned rollout and migration of this solution ensured the minimum amount of downtime possible while providing the company with a highly available hosted IT platform that is resilient, redundant, ultra-secure and highly available. The business now also benefits from rolling hardware upgrades as required by existing installed software, and software upgrades when desired by the company, and the business now has complete peace of mind in regards to the physical and virtual security of their service network. As a result, each office has access to a centralised server environment but isnt relying on the Main Office to be available, resulting in increased productivity and morale within the workforce, and therefore increased the companys turnover. Thanks to Quest Cloud Solutions Ltd.s ability to think outside of the box and develop a tailored solution based on the companys needs, wants, budget, and existing concerns, Amoria Bond now benefits from a highly available IT platform that exactly fits their needs. As a result, the company has since expanded to 90 users, and successfully opened an office in Singapore; this has been made possible by utilising state-of-the-art Cisco WAN (Wide Area Network) Acceleration technology, which has dramatically reduced the latency that was present between the Singapore office and the Quest datacentre (due to the substantial geographic distance between them). For information on how your business could benefit from a tailored cloud solution, please have a look at our website and blog at www.questcloudcomputing.co.uk, or get in touch with our Sales Team on 0845 521 6000, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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