geodis

Case Studies

an Australian manufacturer of products for the construction and building industry

ACO Polycrete gains a more stable and cost-effective IT environment with server and storage refresh

Construction and building product manufacturer engages Core Technology Partners to deploy new, better performing server and storage infrastructure at its Sydney head office.

Company profile

ACO Polycrete is an Australian manufacturer of products for the construction and building industry. The company provides stormwater, building drainage, cable pit and ducting systems, access covers and other products for specialised applications, which are installed in internal and external residential, commercial and industrial sites. ACO Polycrete is headquartered in Sydney and has offices and distributors across Australia, South East Asia and the South Pacific. It is part of multinational organisation, ACO Group.

Business problem

Up until recently, ACO Polycrete was grappling with ageing technology infrastructure for just over 100 staff at its head office in Sydney and five satellite offices in Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth. A mix of HP and Dell servers, desktops and laptops at each site and a storage area network (SAN) were expensive to maintain and not performing as they should. Print services, in particular, ran poorly and constantly needed to be rebooted.

“This ageing IT equipment was underperforming and we were spending way too much money on yearly maintenance costs,” said Yin Yoong Liew, IT manager at ACO Polycrete. “We quickly realised that we needed to replace our technology infrastructure.”

Solution provided by Core Technology Partners

ACO Polycrete had initially purchased laptops and desktops from Core Technology Partners (CTP) and engaged the organisation again to provide new IT equipment and installation services at its Sydney head office. In late 2015, Core Technology Partners replaced the organisation’s existing storage infrastructure with a new Dell Compellent storage area network (SAN) array.

CTP also rolled out three new Dell PowerEdge R730 servers which run around 13 virtual servers. These servers host core enterprise resource planning (ERP), Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft IAS server, and Microsoft SQL Server platforms. A separate machine runs an in-house developed customer relationship management (CRM) application. CTP also installed Veeam back-up and replication software at ACO Polycrete’s Sydney office.

ACO Polycrete also has around 100 desktops and laptops across the organisation – a mix of Dell OptiPlex 9020 and Dell Latitude e7450 and e7440 machines. Liew installed one new server and UPS at each office in Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth. An MPLS network connects all five sites.

A more stable environment

Core Technology Partners’ technical team took just one week to deploy a more stable technology environment at ACO Polycrete’s Sydney office.

“We no longer have issues with servers hanging and needing to be rebooted, particularly across our satellite offices,” Liew.

“Our SAN is also performing much better and we have been able to reconfigure it so we have double the amount of space at around 12TB,” Liew said. “We needed extra data storage because we are looking at rolling out a new document management application. Our files are growing exponentially – as a manufacturer we store many of our own designs as well as drawings from third party suppliers,” he said.

The Veeam backup software, installed by CTP’s technicians, enables Liew to restore files almost immediately in the event of a system failure. It would previously take the team several hours to restore files following a system crash.

More cost-effective infrastructure

Core Technology Partners has provided ACO Polycrete with a five-year support contract for the new, better performing IT infrastructure, said Liew. The cost of the new infrastructure is on par with the money ACO was paying in monthly maintenance fees for the older equipment, he said.

“We are basically getting new equipment for the same amount of money,” Liew said. “We also no longer have the worry about paying monthly or yearly maintenance on infrastructure. The processing technology in the new Dell PowerEdge servers is much better, which means they are far more reliable than our previous machines.”

Why Core Technology Partners?

Technical staff at Core Technology Partners are responsive and always on call to service ACO Polycrete’s equipment when required, said Liew.

“We get good results from CTP; they are always willing to go the extra mile,” he said. “When we were going through the infrastructure refresh process, CTP’s staff provided us with quite a number of leasing options, which made it easy to decide which option fit best with our requirements.”

Liew added that as the only IT staffer across the organisation, it’s quite different for him to specialise in all aspects of enterprise technology.

“CTP provide me with the skills that I don’t have at a very cost-effective price,” he said.

 

Problem

Replace ageing, inefficient and expensive IT infrastructure across five locations.

Solution

  • Dell Compellent storage area network array
  • Three new Dell PowerEdge R730 servers that run 13 virtual servers
  • Dell OptiPlex 9020 and Dell Latitude e7450 and e7440 PCs and laptops

Benefits

  • Deployed a more stable and efficient IT environment in one week
  • Provided better performing IT infrastructure for the same cost as previously installed servers and storage systems
  • Gained double the amount of storage space with a new storage area network
  • Installed backup and recovery software that enabled the company to immediately restore files in the event of a server failure