IT services company Lanrex has helped Australian engineering firm UES move its entire IT infrastructure to the cloud, replacing all its software with new cloud-based applications.
UES is a family-owned, 112-year-old firm with operations in New Zealand and the USA. It specialises in seating, industrial, marine and transportation hardware and has more than 100 employees in offices across Australian and New Zealand.
Prior to implementing Lanrex’s IT solution, UES had been struggling. It had outgrown its in-house IT infrastructure and had moved its servers to a data centre but with servers dating back to 2004 and running Windows 2003, that move was not successful.
The in-house network was outdated and several core applications had not been upgraded. Some upgrades could not be applied because they required the latest version of SQL, which was not compatible with the UES environment. This particularly impacted the enterprise resource planning (ERP) system.
As a result, backups were unreliable, branches had to wait for systems to respond and data was lost.Staff morale and productivity were affected. The company went to the market for a solution, and after evaluating a number of proposals chose Lanrex.
Lanrex built a complete new IT environment in the cloud, retaining only UES’s data. This environment comprised Citrix XenApp technology running on Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Microsoft Office 365, together with an appropriate platform for the UES ERP system. This resulted in faster set-up and configuration of servers; lower capacity risks and reduced monthly maintenance costs.
Staff now work more efficiently and are more productive: they no longer have to wait for systems to respond. The network is stable and reliable, up-front capex costs have been reduced, along with the number of servers. All IT infrastructure — operating system, applications and network —are outsourced and managed by Lanrex. A new customer relationship management (CRM) system, accessible by sales staff out on the road, has been implemented using Microsoft Dynamics.
The Citrix environment enables all UES’s applications to be centralised and provides secure remote access on any device, anywhere. UES staff now use Citrix Receiver on any supported device (thin clients, desktops, Macs, iPad, Android) to connect to the UES Citrix environment.
Citrix NetScaler authenticates users and provides the Citrix Storefront where users can add their relevant applications such as Office 365 apps or connect to a published desktop if they prefer.This also means that staff use mostly thin clients instead of desktop computers or laptops, further reducing the need for IT expertise in-house.
Lanrex is now helping UES build an intranet to enable efficient discovery and retrieval of company information, regardless of location. Microsoft SharePoint will be used to organise, share and manage content. Discussions have already taken place and later in 2016 ideas for the future will be consolidated.
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