Infrastructure & Technical Services

Infrastructure & Technical Services2018-07-20T11:09:54+00:00

Presbyterian Care Tasmania (PCT) is an accredited provider of ages and supported accommodation services for approximately 350 residents via residential aged care facilities, community care programmes, day respite centres and a 34 unit retirement village.

The issue

A series of licensing concerns combined with a change of internal management structures triggered PCT to make the decision to move from their Queensland-based data centre to a new data centre with local management capabilities. The main driver behind this was to allow the new management team to have a closer relationship with the IT service providers.

The project faced high levels of complexity, severely constrained time frames and multiple business critical systems pertaining to patient health that needed to be migrated quickly and without issue.

The process

Commencing with a discussion about licensing coverage and costs, the project quickly evolved into a full data centre migration of all of PCT’s hosted systems, from a location interstate to one that was managed by ITR. This decision was made with only a month left to run under the existing support arrangements and faced the head winds of an uncooperative, existing service provider. Specifically, the incumbent provider withheld administrative passwords and architecture documentation. As a result, ITR was forced to forensically discover the client’s architecture.

The migration directly covered the movement of the hosted data and virtual servers but also the reconfiguration of PCT physical infrastructure and network devices, including the phone system, to point at the new data centre resources and locations. In order to complete the migration ITR sent technical resources interstate.

The migration covered the following systems:

  • Active Directory and the Domain Name Servers
  • SQL Servers
  • The Citrix environment
  • The SharePoint solution including:
    • The external corporate website, and
    • The employee intranet
  • Corporate services solutions including:
    • HR and training
    • Finance
    • Payroll
  • Patient Care services
  • Print servers
  • File servers and
  • The virtual network controllers including:
    • The proxies, and
    • Firewalls

In parallel with the migration, ITR also needed to take over the responsibility for the management and support of PCT’s day to day IT operations.

Finally, PCT required that the migration occur mid-week with the critical systems completed out of business hours.

The outcome

Despite having effectively less than one month to plan, and implement the migration, the project was delivered within the tolerances of scope, time and quality and under its cost budget. Subsequent system improvement processes have ensured the PCT now has a resilient and fully documented environment.

Presbyterian Care Tasmania (PCT) is an accredited provider of ages and supported accommodation services for approximately 350 residents via residential aged care facilities, community care programmes, day respite centres and a 34 unit retirement village.

The issue

In the wake of their “like for like” data centre migration (also delivered by ITR), PCT decided to subsequently upgrade their standard operating environment (SOE), the Citrix environment it is delivered through and all of the supporting servers associated with the provision of the SOE.  These servers included the virtual environments in the data centre and the physical servers at each of the four organisational sites.

The goal of the project was to standardise the environment to improve the cost effectiveness, stability, performance, robustness and scalability of the solution.

The process

The project analysed the catalogue of services offered in the SOE, then made recommendations in relation to potential upgrade pathways.  Additionally, the project removed the inherent licensing disparities in the existing licensing arrangements.

The recommendations covered standard productivity suites, aged care specific applications, technology management environments and included recommendations to move toward a more centralised architecture.

The proposed solution also incorporated improved remote access capabilities, as well as a simplified licensing model that could be easily tailored to individual employee needs, rather than applying a “one size fits all” approach.

The project team carried out extensive business impact analysis activities to ensure the least impact to PCT employees and clients whilst ensure the highest levels of acceptance during transition.

The project was delivered via several phases based either on the environment that was being transitioned, or the site that was being migrated. Each phase incorporated user-acceptance testing activities prior to any changes to the production environment.

The outcome

By the conclusion of this highly complex project, all of the key deliverables were implemented within the tolerances of scope, quality and time.  Several unforeseen issues did impact the project delivery, namely to do with specific business applications and the high levels of variability in the age and specification of the workstation fleet.  ITR made the decision to apply extra resources to the project to ensure that it remained on schedule and absorbed the resulting cost impact.

Tasmanian Railway (TasRail) was formed in 2009 to operate the “above rail” and “below rail” business activities within the Tasmanian Railway network.

The “above rail” operations include:

  • 1 shiploader
  • 374 wagons
  • 36 locomotives
  • 6 freight terminals
  • 2 bulk handling facilities
  • 140 train services in an average week

The “below rail” operations include:

  • 632 route km of operational track
  • 211 route km of non-operational track
  • 1.25 million sleepers
  • 355 bridges
  • ~500 level crossings
  • 3 tunnels

The issue

Prior to the implementation of this project, the organisation’s information services were delivered via a range physical legacy systems. The project asked ITR to design, implement and manage a new data centre that would offer the organisation scalability, stability, improved performance and value for money. Additionally the solution needed to offer TasRail a ten-year operational horizon and needed to include all management platforms, physical facilities and disaster recovery processes.

The process

Engaging with a range of industry partners, ITR provided project management, solution analysis and design services as well as field and technical resources as required. The project required ITR to work within the strict guidelines of the procurement, laid down for government-based enterprises in Tasmania. In order meet the tight deadlines of the project, ITR negotiated to conduct the procurement via a single supplier process rather than via competitive tendering.

The project governance board identified that there was significant level of risk associated with this project and so a series of intensive workshops were conducted with the project stakeholders to ensure that final requirements were comprehensively understood.

To deliver the project, ITR worked closely with Hewlett Packard (HP). In association with HP, ITR developed an extensive program of user and systems testing to further mitigate the significant risks associated with project. The testing regime covered both the physical and application architectures.

Finally, as a part of the engagement with HP and as a key deliverable of the project, ITR assessed it’s internal support capabilities. Based on that gap analysis, ITR and HP then conducted multiple training sessions to ensure that ITR could provide the highest levels of support.

The outcome

In the end, ITR delivered a fully virtualised solution that has provided better than “five nines” performance since implementation. The project was delivered 6 months ahead of schedule and at 15% less than originally budgeted.