Cloud migration brought savings – Destia relies on a scalable hybrid solution
Destia takes care of Finland’s traffic routes and the infrastructure of our living environments. To do this, it needs reliable information system and rapid service development. Enfo designed and implemented Destia’s cloud migration, in which much of its business-critical systems were transferred to the cloud.
Enfo is Destia’s long-term ICT partner and supports Destia in areas such as cloud platform architecture and environment management. “In 2018, Destia adopted the Cloud Care service model in which a Trusted Advisor appointed by Enfo is responsible for the cloud architecture and the Azure team brings deep expertise of the environment. The service model has provided Destia with agile help: needs are responded to quickly and communication is smooth”, says Account Director Rami Virta, who is responsible for Destia’s account at Enfo.
Digitalization is high up on Destia’s strategy and requires the rapid development, deployment and expansion of new services. The purpose of the Cloud Care service model was to accelerate the implementation of new solutions, but the cooperation was extended to the transfer of existing systems.
The service model has provided Destia with agile help: needs are responded to quickly and communication is smooth.
“Support for platform services was about to be terminated for many of Destia’s critical business and support systems, but the applications still had some life-cycle remaining. The options were a larger project to replace the platforms or a significant investment in continued support. Microsoft offered continued support at no additional cost if the systems were migrated to the cloud. This encouraged the transfer of the systems”, says Solution Architect Petrus Lehtimäki from Enfo.
Business benefits put first in the transfer to the cloud
Destia started planning the transfer to the cloud with Enfo’s IT architects in the spring of 2019. Enfo was a natural choice as it is very familiar with Destia’s operating environment and can provide help with business development.
“Enfo has been a reliable outsourcing partner for Destia for many years, and we also rely on their expertise as regards the Azure environment. Due to our resource situation, we decided to entrust the entire cloud migration project to Enfo, with our tasks being limited to testing the functionalities of the systems following the transfers. The cooperation went well and we were able to stick to the agreed schedules and budget”, says ICT Service Manager Heli Rissanen from Destia.
The cloud migration covered a significant part of Destia’s systems and database solutions. “For example, a key integration environment and several business-critical systems, such as the purchase invoice, payment traffic and POS system, were transferred to the cloud. Other systems were optimized alongside the migration, and some of them could be made more stable with minor changes. We took full advantage of these quick wins”, Lehtimäki says.
We also rely on the Enfo's expertise as regards the Azure environment. The cooperation went well and we were able to stick to the agreed schedules and budget.
Scheduling pressures were brought on by the termination of support and the cost of up to hundreds of thousands of euros for continued support. The project was prioritized on this basis and the most challenging migrations were carried out by midsummer 2019. It was important for Destia that the most critical changes take place before the winter season. For example, the database environment for winter management was overhauled completely even though the system itself was not transferred to the cloud. Critical functionalities remained in Enfo’s data center, but parts were transferred to the cloud so that system data could be utilized with cloud analytics tools. This resulted in a scalable and stable hybrid solution.
Thorough groundwork was key
The starting point for the Destia project was challenging. The migration involved an extensive set of unique operating environments with complex technical interdependencies. The systems contained databases of various applications, including crosswise. Existing licenses had to be taken into account as their impact on the overall cost is significant. Support from the application supplier was no longer available for some systems. Enfo’s nearly 10 years of experience and tacit knowledge of Destia’s operating environment proved to be valuable.
The success of the project required thorough planning and analysis of the source environment. “Technical interdependencies were modeled using cloud services. The planning was guided by the customer’s needs and interest, not technology or Enfo’s business. All the necessary parties – Destia’s business operations, application developers and administrators – worked together. The need for resources was assessed carefully in advance and, upon Destia’s request, Enfo took as much responsibility for the whole project as possible, partly coordinating the work directly with the application suppliers. The load on Destia was minimized – the customer was mainly needed to confirm decisions from time to time”, Lehtimäki describes. This indicates strong trust: the people at Destia knew that Enfo’s team would put Destia’s interest first in their work.
Enfo’s team consisted of highly skilled experts who were motivated by the opportunity to show the customer the benefits of long-term cooperation. The project also provided an opportunity for continuous development, which is one of Enfo’s values. The transition was driven forward one application at a time, making the implementation of the migration smoother from one system to the next. The work was carried out in reasonable steps and with constant optimization.
The people at Destia knew that Enfo’s team would put Destia’s interest first in their work.
Significant savings and second phase of the cloud migration in sight
The transfer to the cloud has already resulted in significant savings for Destia in avoided continued support costs and optimized database licenses. Further savings can be achieved on IT infrastructure when it is paid for according to usage. The cloud migration will also allow for faster and more flexible development and expansion of new services.
“The servers have been transferred to Azure and MS support for them is continuing. The greatest benefit will be visible to Destia as savings in server costs”, Heli Rissanen says. “The goal is to also transfer the rest of the systems to Azure, if their operation permits it. When purchasing new systems, we require them to work in the Azure environment.”
Destia is a Finnish infrastructure and construction service company that builds, maintains and designs traffic routes, tracks, industrial and traffic environments as well as complete living environments. Destia’s solutions enable the flow of people, goods, services and energy. Destia’s customer base includes industrial and business companies, cities, municipalities and government agencies.
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