IT Brief Australia - Technology news for CIOs & IT decision-makers
Story image
How New South Wales state departments achieved cloud migration success
Wed, 29th Jun 2022
FYI, this story is more than a year old

State departments in New South Wales are heading to the cloud to achieve better workflow solutions, and one company is paving the way for their success.

In a new case study from cloud experts Accenture, the monumental shift of critical department SAP systems to Microsoft Azure is examined, with the company playing a pivotal role in leading the charge.

While state departments have continued to use a holistic SAP service based on Accenture Enterprise Services for Government (AESG), the fact it is hosted on a private cloud has limited opportunities to optimise performance and innovation in service offerings.

Because AESG enables departments and agencies to operate functions such as finance, procurement, HR and payroll from a single system, there is a perceived onus that it should be utilised and secured to its full potential.

To help achieve this, Accenture worked closely with involved parties to thoroughly assess all options and proposed moving the solution to Microsoft Azure, with public cloud offering an opportunity to improve and future-proof the AESG solution.

Migrations are never an easy task, but because of Accenture's extensive client knowledge, deep relationship with Microsoft and SAP migration experience, the company was in the best position to provide the ultimate service and assurance.

The team used Accenture myNav to assess and select Azure as the hosting platform for AESG, and conducted proof of concept workshops with the departments and Microsoft to build a viable business case.

As with all migrations, there were significant challenges to solve and measures to take. The team was dealing with approximately 40TB of data, more than 400 interfaces, and nearly 90 production and non-production systems. One of these was the complex SAP S/4HANA data management and analytical platform. To maximise assurance, there were also 2,600 test scenarios conducted and seven simulated runs.

Added pressure came from the continuity aspects, as there were no development freezes because payroll simply could not stop. The client was also concerned a migration of this size would severely disrupt critical systems.

Luckily, because of Accenture's trademark collaborative approach, working with Microsoft was seamless and both companies worked innovatively as one team. They jointly designed a hub-and-spoke model for the virtual data center where everything was centralised, including a security hub that allows multi-security classification across the platform. The team also adopted a low-level migration strategy, essentially migrating from the source hypervisor (VMWare) to the target hypervisor (Azure), which lessens the chance of further problems.

These behemoth achievements in transferring the SAP environment to the public cloud occurred in less than six months, highlighting the power of teamwork and resilience. To add to this, the team even ended up onboarding several new agencies during the migration.

It's clear that public cloud allows enterprises to strengthen security, improve flexibility, expand operations and meet customised requirements. An ERP service that launched in 2015 on a private cloud with just a handful of NSW government agencies now serves more than 40 agencies across multiple clusters on the Microsoft Azure public cloud.

With Accenture's expertise, clients can be rewarded with top-quality processing of critical functions like finance, HR and payroll, leading to a smoother and richer user experience.

Is your business thinking of migrating? Contact Accenture here for more details.