Cloud Computing Solution for Municipal Utility Provider

Summary

By thoroughly understanding the customer’s Disaster Recovery requirements, TeraGo was able to provide an end-to-end Data Flow and Disaster Recovery solution that provided 99.99% availability.

The Customer

The Customer is a municipal owned utility corporation providing services to over 60,000 customers located in Ontario. The customer has 160 employees with two primary offices. The customer operates a call centre as well as a web site providing customer facing applications. They recently acquired a new business and they have plans for future acquisitions.

Situation Analysis

The customer had no access redundancy in place and was looking for a fail over solution should their primary connection fail. After consultation with the customer, it was identified that the customer was considering moving to a Data Centre Environment and/or a Cloud based solution because they had just acquired a new utility company. TeraGo, who offers end-to-end data solutions, was able to fulfill this need by creating a bundled solution that includes Data Centre, Cloud and Access Solutions.

The following items were identified as issues that needed to be considered as part of the overall solution:

Business Issues

  • Requirement for 100% uptime to meet internal 1, 3 and 24 hour SLA’s for their Client web portal as well as to meet vendor relationship commitments.
  • Disaster recovery plan as no redundancy or disaster recovery strategy was in place. If there was a disaster, it would take ‘days’ to get back to a steady operating state.
  • Requirement for connectivity between the current offices and newly acquired offices.
  • Virtualize the IT environment to allow for rapid integration of the new businesses as they are acquired.

Current Environment

  • Their current IT infrastructure is shared over a MPLS network between the head office and remote offices. The head office has a Gigabit Ethernet service with the local cable company.
  • There was no current way to meet their client SLA’s if an outage or disaster occurred.

Solution Requirements

  • An Infrastructure that could deliver 99.99% reliability.
  • A cloud compute and storage environment that could rapidly scale and was capable of mirroring their current primary infrastructure with the capability to recover during a disaster within 45 minutes.
  • A Data Center or Cloud Presence to provide a safe and secure offsite infrastructure and ensure no loss of data in the event of disaster, serviced on a separate power grid from the company’s current infrastructure.
  • Access redundancy capabilities for their primary data connections.
  • A methodology to quickly interconnect data connectivity between new businesses as they were acquired.
  • An escalation process in case of a disaster with training of internal company personnel to implement the disaster recovery solution.
  • A solution that was compliant with the company’s union contract against ‘outsourcing’.
  • A solution that can scale quickly and economically as the customer’s application demands increase.

The Solution

TeraGo proposed a full Cloud Computing and Storage Solution to provide disaster recovery with a diverse redundant internet connection with active redundancy capability to ensure network connectivity. TeraGo’s cloud services are located in TeraGo’s data centre facilities on an independent power infrastructure, ensuring full availability even during a major outage. By providing a virtual environment, application management was maintained by the utility, meeting all union and personnel concerns. Most importantly, TeraGo’s cloud solution is able to scale as the customer’s application and data requirements increase, eliminating the need to deploy incremental capital.

Results

TeraGo presented the customer with a Cloud Compute Solution that included end to end data flow integration utilizing Data Centres, Access and Cloud solutions. TeraGo built a trusted relationship with the customer by working through their issues and deploying a solution that is efficient, scalable and secure. As the customer continues to grow, TeraGo can implement solutions to scale to their incremental requirements.

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