A PRIVATE CLOUD SOLUTION SUPPORTS GREATER FLEXIBILITY

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1 CASE STUDY RBF A PRIVATE CLOUD SOLUTION SUPPORTS GREATER FLEXIBILITY RBF USES A TECHNOLOGY UPDATE TO BOOST PRODUCTIVITY AND MAKE SAVINGS CASE STUDY SNAPSHOT CUSTOMER RETIREMENT BENEFITS FUND INDUSTRY Superannuation REQUIREMENTS A complete update of the organisation s IT and communications systems within an extremely narrow turnaround time. SOLUTION An integrated IP network solution consisting of: Cisco Nexus 7000 network core, Cisco UCS Compute, NetApp MetroCluster storage, Commvault Backup, VMware vsphere virtual infrastructure, Cisco thin client desktop devices, Citrix XenDesktop desktop virtualisation, Microsoft Lync IP telephony and video. RESULTS Implemented complete refresh of IT infrastructure and applications over a three-month planning period and twoday intensive installation process.

2 RBF RBF WANTED TO REFRESH ITS AGING IT INFRASTRUCTURE TO HELP TRANSFORM THE BUSINESS.

3 2 OVERVIEW The Retirement Benefits Fund (RBF) is the largest superannuation fund in Tasmania, providing retirement benefits to 76,000 current and former state service employees and their spouses. In addition to its core Tasmanian Accumulation Scheme and defined benefits Contributory Scheme, RBF also comprises the Tasmanian Ambulance Service Superannuation Scheme, the State Fire Commission Superannuation Scheme, the Parliamentary Superannuation Fund and the Parliamentary Retiring Benefits Fund. Established in 1904, RBF employs 120 staff in Hobart and Launceston, and has $4.5 billion in funds under management.

4 RBF CHALLENGE In 2012, following the outsourcing of its member administration services the year prior, RBF identified a requirement to move to new premises and refresh its aging IT infrastructure from the ground up. The update plan included a redundant, virtualised infrastructure, a virtual desktop platform and mobile devices to allow staff to access their work from any workstation, while travelling or at home both easily and securely. It also featured new IP phones and thin client devices, and required paper documents to be archived, destroyed or scanned and shifted into the cloud. Each part of the new infrastructure was to be hosted in a private cloud run from two new geographically separated, offsite data centres where RBF had leased space. The focus of the new strategy was to transform the business through information technology, information management and office accommodation to provide contemporary office accommodation and flexible working arrangements for our employees, says Philip Mussared, the RBF CEO. That really drove the decision to move to the thin client model so that people have the option to work offsite, down the road in a café, while travelling or at home. Six months after the transformation, 20% of RBF s staff is now working under formalised flexible arrangements. RBF s IT system comprised desktop computers running on a client server network that was at its end-of-life and was not capable of supporting a flexible working model. RBF needed an ICT solutions provider that could orchestrate a tailored, organisation-wide IT refresh to meet its business requirements for the next five years. When the contract was put to market in June 2012, one of the tender requirements was that the successful respondent would move the new system live over a single weekend. This was critical in order to minimise business disruption. A smooth implementation was imperative to ensure staff could walk out of the old Hobart office on a Friday and use the new IT system at the new premises on the following Monday. SOLUTION RBF awarded the contract to Optus Business because of its capabilities and commitment to carrying out a hands-on implementation with Hobart-based staff. The Optus team who planned the network solution would also be responsible for its installation and providing support to RBF employees in its first week of use. The proposed solution called for two offsite data centres. Instead of running one data centre full-time and keeping the other idle for disaster recovery, Optus suggested that RBF make the most of its hardware investment and use both sites in tandem to deliver a higher level of performance, availability and business continuity. WE NOW HAVE TWO ACTIVE DATA CENTRES, IF ONE DATA CENTRE GOES DOWN, THE OTHER CAN TAKE ON THE FULL LOAD OF OUR IT ENVIRONMENT AND ALLOW US TO CONTINUE TO WORK. THAT S AN EXTREMELY IMPORTANT BUSINESS CONTINUITY FEATURE TO HAVE IN PLACE AND OFFERS US COMPLETE PEACE OF MIND. Says Susan Harvey, the Program Manager for the RBF Information, Technology and Accommodation Project. At the centre of the solution is a Cisco Nexus 7000 network switch, which allows both data centres to appear as a single, seamless network. This forms the basis for a VMware vsphere virtual infrastructure, underpinned by NetApp MetroCluster and Cisco UCS compute. Respectively, these store the organisation s data and run its applications in a private cloud. As each part of the infrastructure exists in the private cloud, its applications are accessible to all staff, including remote users, through secure internet connectivity. The system also can be scaled to suit RBF s IT requirements as they evolve over time. In the office, Cisco thin client devices and Citrix XenDesktop enable employees to take their virtual desktop with them wherever they go. At RBF s new premises, staff can log on to any machine at any workstation and access their own documents, applications and settings. At the end of the day, they can stop work halfway through a document, disconnect from their office session and pick up where they left off on a tablet or on their home PC or laptop. This also has made working from home both more flexible but also more secure because staff needn t take information home on USB keys or other physical media. Microsoft s Unified Communications and Telephony platform Lync and IP phones with cameras for video conferencing complement this virtual desktop. Using the new integrated system, an employee can be contacted on their own work number wherever they are even when working from a laptop or tablet. This means RBF now has a mobile workforce which can collaborate between its two office sites. Staff in Launceston have the same IT user-experience as their colleagues in Hobart, without the need for additional on-site infrastructure.

5 4 SOLUTION Optus delivered the solution within three months in a smooth changeover that didn t disrupt RBF staff. RBF s 120 employees arrived at their new premises to find a fully operational new computer and communications system that picked up where they had left off before the weekend. The new system also has allowed RBF to dramatically cut its carbon footprint. Replacing paper for meetings with tablets and desktop virtualisation, coupled with the decision to store files digitally within the private cloud, meant the need for office printing was greatly reduced. In the month of July prior to the new infrastructure, the organisation printed 135,255 pages. In the month after changing to the new system, RBF printed only 31,000 pages a 77 % reduction, or the equivalent of 150 trees a year. Even that level of printing will be further reduced over coming months as the organisation encourages staff to challenge, with respect the use of paper and printing. Newspaper subscriptions were replaced with online subscriptions. The energy consumption of the new virtual desktops is approximately 10%* of the original energy consumption of the PCs they replaced, which equates to a 90% reduction. The system also has rationalised workflows within RBF. Before, superannuation consultants preparing for a meeting with a fund member had to print the relevant documents. Now, when staff move from their workspace into a thin-client-equipped meeting room, their desktop information follows them virtually and securely. This has transformed how the superannuation fund s back office functions, improving customer service capabilities, and leading to greater productivity and potential business growth in the future. We have such a degree of improved flexibility with our new IT environment; it s really changed the way we work. WE HAVE SUCH A DEGREE OF IMPROVED FLEXIBILITY NOW WITH OUR NEW IT ENVIRONMENT; IT S REALLY CHANGED THE WAY THAT WE ARE WORKING. ABOUT OPTUS BUSINESS At Optus Business we don t want to be an ordinary ICT provider. We understand that the decisions you make today are going to have a huge impact on your business tomorrow. So we re always keen to understand more than just your ICT needs we want to understand everything about your business. Backed by the strength of SingTel, we draw on their resources, expertise and global reach, allowing us to offer a truly integrated ICT service. From fixed and mobile connectivity, right through to a comprehensive suite of solutions and managed services, we re committed to redefining ICT. So our customers can get closer to their customers.

6 RBF THE RESULTS BENEFITS FROM THE ADOPTION OF VIRTUALISED ENVIRONMENT 20% OF STAFF NOW WORKING UNDER FORMALISED FLEXIBLE ARRANGEMENTS JUST BEING ABLE TO ACCESS YOUR OWN VIRTUAL DESKTOP, NO MATTER WHERE YOU ARE, IS A HUGE STEP FORWARD. THERE ARE NO MORE INACCESSIBLE APPLICATIONS. WE HAVE SUCH A DEGREE OF IMPROVED FLEXIBILITY WITH OUR NEW IT ENVIRONMENT; IT S REALLY CHANGED THE WAY WE WORK.

7 THE WORKING-FROM-HOME EXPERIENCE IS A THOUSAND TIMES BETTER THAN WHAT IT WAS. 77% REDUCTION OF PRINTED PAGES 90% REDUCTION OF ENERGY CONSUMPTION * APPROXIMATELY * Source:

8 GIVE US A CALL To discuss how Optus can help you through innovative communications solutions; contact your Optus Account Manager or call the Optus Business hotline on JOIN THE CONVERSATION Web Twitter Blog yesopt.us/blog Copyright 2013 SingTel Optus Pty Limited. OBN TF

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