UK’s Department for Transport gains speed, saves costs by migrating ERP systems to AWS

UK’s Department for Transport gains speed, saves costs by migrating ERP systems to AWS

30th September 2022 · Arvato · News, Press Releases

Our partnership and work with the Department for Transport to migrate their enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems to the cloud, has been featured in a short case study by Amazon Web Services (AWS). You can read more and found out how it’s benefiting them below:

The Department for Transport (DfT), which manages road, rail, aviation, and other transportation systems in the UK, found that using on-premise technology for its business systems left it trapped in an inefficient cycle: spending money to refresh aging hardware, use that hardware until it grew obsolete, then repeat. It ended that cycle with a migration to Amazon Web Services (AWS). Today, the government agency is confident that its IT is secure, future-proof, and able to scale quickly to meet evolving needs.

Using AWS, the DfT can easily develop and roll out new applications without any significant upfront investment. Over the next few years, this could help it to save millions of pounds in expenses.

With its existing enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems approaching end-of-life in late 2019, the DfT faced a choice: either update its on-premises technology, which would have meant a costly investment in new hardware, or move to the cloud. Either way, it was vital to ensure that business-critical applications—supporting finance, procurement, payroll, and HR for the department’s 19,000 civil servants—could keep running without interruption during the update.

Working with AWS, ArvatoConnect, and Mobilise Cloud, the DfT decided to migrate its aging Unit4 Business World and SAP systems to AWS. The move required a like-for-like IT refresh that would replace all of the department’s on-premises capabilities with equal capabilities in the cloud, while also adding new levels of security, flexibility, and scalability for future needs. The migration also needed to be completed quickly and safely during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Under a 2013 government program to consolidate and streamline costs, the DfT had turned over management of its shared services center in Swansea to Arvato. Six years later, to migrate the DfT’s physical ERP systems at that center into the cloud without disruption, a new solution was designed, built, tested, and implemented using the AWS Well-Architected framework. During the migration, large volumes of DfT data were transferred to AWS without service interruption using a VPN and a Gigabit connection. Deploying the AWS solution also required independent security accreditation. 

The DfT now uses several Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instances that have been optimized for SAP and Unit4 ERP systems. This has improved efficiency, agility, and speed of service delivery, making it easier for users to scale and adapt to changing needs. The solution also uses AWS Transit Gateway, Application Load Balancer, Network Load Balancer, multiple AWS Site-to-Site VPN connections, and AWS Direct Connect to securely connect the DfT’s network to AWS. In addition to eliminating the need for expensive future hardware updates, the DfT has reduced its rack management costs by 45 percent and improved its organizational resilience. 

With the UK government’s digital strategy, agencies like the DfT are being challenged to streamline their operations and create efficiencies through technology. “Using AWS has meant a system that provides high levels of availability, scalability, performance, and stability,” says David Thomas, public sector director and UK IT director for ArvatoConnect.

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