Microsoft Azure delivers greater scalability and remote collaboration for energy logistics firm

Overview

ASCO is a leading logistics and materials management company supporting the oil and gas industry. For over 50 years, they have delivered specialist end-to-end logistical management of equipment, materials and waste for major international energy companies. Other core areas of their business include decommissioning and services for the renewables sector.

Challenge

ASCO were using a private cloud hosted service provided by Dell, which lacked scalability and was inefficient in terms of maintenance and cost. To replace this, they wanted to explore public cloud services, which offer greater scalability, flexibility, lower costs and no maintenance. Before taking the leap, ASCO consulted with Bytes for help choosing and migrating to a suitable cloud platform.

The Bytes Solution

To determine if migrating was viable, ASCO completed a funded Movere assessment for insights about their current infrastructure. The data from this analysis proved positive and enabled Bytes and ASCO to compare options for cloud platforms. Bytes recommended Microsoft Azure as the most suitable platform for ASCO’s business needs and they decided to migrate.

Before migrating, ASCO required assistance creating a roadmap. Bytes engaged their Cloud Solutions Specialists, who ran advisory workshops to help ASCO plan their migration journey, identify barriers and focus on their goals. When it was time to migrate, Bytes facilitated FastTrack for Azure, which was led by Microsoft engineers and supported by weekly progress meetings from Bytes. This enabled ASCO to migrate their on-premises infrastructure to Azure successfully.

ASCO then used the Bytes FastTrack service for guidance deploying and adopting Microsoft 365 - a suite of cloud-based productivity apps, including Teams and Outlook. As part of this service, Bytes’ experts ran several technical workshops exploring the suite and its features. This helped ASCO in their decision to fully embrace Teams and use it for their overall telephony platform, replacing the Skype system they had used since 2014.

Another reason for adopting Microsoft 365 was its robust security, including information protection and compliance capabilities, rights management, message encryption, email archiving and data loss protection. These features will add further peace of mind for the IT team.

Benefits

Thanks to Bytes and Microsoft, ASCO migrated successfully to Azure. This flexible and cost-effective platform will help them to scale according to business demands. Within Azure, they use Virtual Machines and Managed Disks to store data and applications securely. Managed Disks are also automated, adding disk storage for Virtual Machines when apps demand it. This eliminates the burden of maintenance and upgrades - giving the IT team freedom to focus on more innovative work.

Bytes also helped ASCO gain optimal value and functionality from Microsoft 365 via their FastTrack service, which consisted of technical workshops and advisory sessions. These gave ASCO in-depth knowledge of the suite, especially Teams, which they now use to enhance collaboration across all business units.

Going forward, ASCO plan to invest further in Azure, taking advantage of Data Analytics and Azure Sentinel to simplify big data and add further security to their cloud estate.

“ASCO used a number of software partners before moving to Bytes. The difference we see is that Bytes bring a range of knowledge, skills and experience across a broad spectrum of both software and services. This has allowed ASCO to move forward quickly as an organisation and adopt new technology with less risk. A good example of this has been the transition of our servers and storage to Microsoft Azure. This has been supported by several services from Bytes to speed up the process, reduce risk and manage the costs. We look forward to a long relationship with Bytes.”

Jim Titmuss, Group IT & Business Systems Director, ASCO

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