Overview

Cherwell District Council and South Northamptonshire Council provide critical local government services to approximately 150,000 people in the north Oxfordshire area.

Client:
Cherwell District Council and South Northamptonshire Council
Industry:
Local Government
Services:
IT Consultancy, Cloud Computing
Web:
www.cherwell.gov.uk
www.southnorthants.gov.uk

Challenge

Cherwell District Council needed to modernise their ageing IT infrastructure and consolidate services across their partnership with South Northamptonshire Council to reduce costs and enable their cloud first strategic vision.

Virtuoso were engaged through our trusted partner Entec Si, who were managing the ITC Transformation programme for Cherwell and South Northants, to guide and support the in-house IT teams through the transformation

Solution

After analysing the strategic requirements Virtuoso created a high level roadmap for the transformation that was agreed and approved by all senior stakeholders, and then worked in partnership with the in-house IT teams and Entec SI to create the detailed designs and deliver the transformation including:

  • A full Office 365 Exchange Online migration design and implementation
  • Design, commissioning and build out of a new consolidated datacentre hosted in a government approved tier-3 external datacentre improving service reliability and reducing administration costs:
    • A converged computing hardware platform and secure network running a highly available Microsoft Hyper-V based environment managed by Microsoft Virtual Machine Manager.
    • Microsoft System Centre Suite for deployment, monitoring and management of datacentre and user systems.
    • Citrix XenApp application and desktop delivery platform for internal and remote access.
    • Microsoft Certificate Services based Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) to provide internal certificate-based encryption and authentication services.
  • Planning and support for service migration from legacy datacentres
  • New consolidated and simplified MPLS WAN architecture
  • Hybrid cloud connectivity for Microsoft Azure
  • Azure cloud-based disaster recovery solution

Cherwell and South Northamptonshire Councils engaged with Virtuoso on a number of technical projects as part of our wider transformation programme. This included a migration to Office 365 Exchange Online and a Datacentre migration, consolidating three  datacentres.

Virtuoso proved to be very professional, knowledgeable and responsive to meeting our needs and consistently met our project deadlines. The Council have been very happy with the work completed and the saving this has generated to running the IT Infrastructure.

Simon Wills, Infrastructure Manager

Results

Working in partnership with Virtuoso, both Councils have been able to successfully complete their ICT transformation and datacentre migrations. The ICT team are now able to provide a consolidated service across Cherwell and South Northamptonshire on a modern, low-maintenance IT platform.

Service reliability has improved allowing the ICT team to focus on supporting further business and operation improvements rather than daily firefighting of issues.

The use of cloud services such as Office 365 and Azure for DR and backup replication has enabled significant cost savings for both Cherwell and South Northamptonshire councils. The provision of integrated hybrid Azure connectivity within their new WAN will allow both Councils to easily provision new or existing services in Azure to provide increasing cost savings in the future.