Oniqua’s Road to the Cloud
Everywhere you turn, it seems like service providers and software companies are talking about “the cloud”. Despite some early over-hyping, cloud platforms have really matured in the last couple of years and are delivering truly amazing benefits. That’s why more and more CIOs, IT managers and business users of technology now embrace cloud computing and SaaS as key components of an integrated IT business strategy.
At Oniqua, we recognized early on that cloud computing held enormous potential for our business – we also saw great potential to offer our customers significant benefits in addition to what they were already getting with Oniqua Analytics Solution (OAS). To keep our business and our offerings on the leading edge – and ensure competitive advantage for our customers – we had to be “leading the pack”.
Since we set out on our own road to the cloud, we’ve never looked back. The strategic decision to move Oniqua’s internal applications and infrastructure into the cloud has allowed us to transform our business at a much faster rate. Just as important, the move has provided critical insight into, and an ability to expand on, the actual value we deliver our customers with Oniqua Cloud – our SaaS offering.
Plenty of Silver Linings: Innovation, Scalability, Disaster Recovery and More
The flexibility and adaptability of the cloud means our business has more freedom to innovate, from ideation (the inspiration and capture of ideas), to the way we implement our products and services.
As Oniqua has grown, our mobility requirements have grown as well – we have global offices and people on the ground in all corners of the globe. By introducing the right cloud services we have ensured all our team members have access to the critical resources and services they need, no matter where they are physically located.
Another key benefit of the cloud is business continuity during natural disasters. Our head office in Brisbane has been through a few of these in recent years, and we’ve had no disruption to the business. The great thing is, our systems stay online and we can service our customers as if nothing happened. People stay connected, and once we know our staff are OK, it’s business as usual.
Instead of worrying about infrastructure, we can focus on integration and the areas of our systems that deliver the most value -- to Oniqua’s business as well as our customers’ businesses. Taking our business to the cloud has allowed us to transform the business and improve the way we do business:
Our time to market is much faster, ensuring our ability to continuously deliver market-leading products and services.
With less dependency on IT infrastructure and resources, the business has more and better options in the selection of new systems.
Disaster recovery (DR) has become simpler and easier – with the move to the cloud we no longer have to think about how to backup complex systems.
Our new cloud projects achieve faster time to value and return on investment (ROI), compared to our on-premise IT projects.
We introduced social networking, improving collaboration and overall knowledge sharing – the direct result is a constant stream of innovative ideas that benefit our customers.
The transformation hasn’t come without its challenges -- we’ve had to rethink our approach to a few things. For example, we deal with security differently now: Instead of the traditional technology-centric lock down and control approach, we have taken a more holistic business-driven approach. The result allows our staff more freedom, with the peace of mind that our data is even more secure.
Rising Above the Risks with a Trusted Partner: Security, Integration and SLAs
When selecting new cloud services partners, we carefully take into account security, integration and service level agreements (SLAs).
With cloud computing partners, trust is the byword – we absolutely must trust the people we deal with. For us to consider a new provider, we have to ensure these key provisions:
We are covered by the appropriate SLAs.
The provider uses world class data centers in a suitable location.
We know where our data is.
We own the data and can readily download a copy when we need it.
- The partner comes with a good reputation, a proven track record, the right security “stamps” and references.
Taking Service Excellence to New Heights
Moving to the cloud supports our efforts to deliver global service excellence. We use the cloud for delivering customer-facing services like the customer portal, online customer support systems and the online user forum.
From a development perspective, we leverage the cloud to adapt faster, develop quicker and introduce greater flexibility.
Working in the cloud gives us the capability to test our products on more platforms, be even more agile and rapidly introduce new features that may have been unattainable otherwise.
Here at Oniqua, we continue to learn from our experiences transitioning to the cloud, and apply those lessons to enhancing our own cloud platform