The IFB News Pipe

Case Study: Cloud Migration Was Smooth Sailing for Global Shipping Firm Craig Group

2 May 2014


When global shipping and energy services firm Craig Group was looking to move its IT systems onto a Cloud server, managers could be forgiven for expecting choppy waters. Cloud is the latest technology to be embraced by the business world, but with 1000 employees offering services around the world – both onshore and offshore – migrating critical systems has potential for massive disruption. However, by working with one of Scotland’s leading IT suppliers, Internet for Business (IFB), the firm ensured the move was plain sailing from start to finish.

Craig Group has three distinct divisions that offer a range of services to the oil and gas and leisure industries which makes their IT requirements unique, as group IT manager Bruce Catto explains. “We provide key services in offshore support, procurement and we also operate one of Scotland’s most popular golf retail outlets and driving ranges – so it’s safe to say that our requirements are quite different.

“Our North Star Shipping service requires us to have systems access across all of our 36 vessels and 24/7 access is one of the most important elements to the success of our business. Our infrastructure was approaching the end of its life and we looked at various options. Moving to Cloud seemed the most sensible option as it is cost effective as we just pay for what we need, and eliminate the risk of over-provisioning allowing us to be flexible with our data storage requirements.  Company data is accessible for all employees which enables flexible working and enhanced efficiency.

“IFB ensured we were involved in every stage from design and specification to testing and implementation and migrating our systems to Cloud went without a hitch.  It was done out with normal working hours and took less than 30 minutes per server. Most of our employees were unaware of anything even happening.

“It was important for us to work with a Scottish firm, which who’s cloud platform minimises the threat of failover, has data backup and recovery platform in the UK.  Some companies have platforms that backup data outside of Europe which may be in breach of the data protection regime. With IFB, we know our data is secure in the UK, which is reassuring for us and our clients.

We put IFB’s Cloud platform through a series of vigorous testing, including out of hours tests, performance in live environment and backup testing to prove it would work for Craig Group. It passed the test, and we were ready to go live!

Graeme Gordon, CEO of IFB adds, “We understand that international businesses need access to data at all times, and we also understand the importance of offshore connectivity for those who are out at sea. We were more than happy to offer our advice and services so that we could meet our client’s needs and expectations. All companies have a requirement for reliable and instant data but when you are dealing with multiple services and offices across the globe, you need to know your service is reliable. ”

Craig Group is a privately owned global shipping and energy services firm, with a turnover of £150million. The group, which employs over 1,000 people, operates the largest, British wholly-owned fleet of offshore support, ROV survey, tanker assist, and emergency response and rescue vessels and delivers oilfield procurement services to 55 countries.

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