Westmead Institute for Medical Research (WIMR) creates a huge amount of valuable information based on research and clinical studies and has recently partnered with Kytec to implement an enterprise hybrid cloud strategy.
The key driver for adopting a hybrid cloud strategy for WMIR was to efficiently manage and protect workloads no matter the location.
With strong ties to other Westmead Health precinct partners, Westmead Institute of Medical Research is a multidisciplinary research organisation that aims to improve health outcomes in a range of areas including heart disease, cancer, diabetes, HIV, melanoma, infection, and many other disciplines.
Westmead is a translational medical research institute and is working on innovative ways to develop personalised treatment for better clinical outcomes.
The hybrid cloud solution was designed and implemented by Kytec as Westmead’s cloud services and technology partner.
Azure Public Cloud Migration
Previously, WIMR ran critical systems such as ERP, Payroll and HR in a hosted environment within an affiliated data centre.
While this initially had cost and efficiency benefits, it was starting to limit the control and the speed with which WIMR could make changes to their applications.
WIMR also wanted a stable infrastructure with greater visibility so they could manage and protect their environment more effectively.
Being a Microsoft365 customer, a migration to Azure meant seamless access to a range of Microsoft services, and partnering with a Microsoft Gold partner like Kytec, was key to a successful project implementation.
Usman Jawaid is the CIO for WIMR. “We migrated workloads from the affiliated data centre to Microsoft Azure. At the end of the day, we are a business, albeit not for profit, where we need to maximise research with limited resources – time, money and people. Moving to cloud improved our efficiency, scalability and allowed us to do more with less”.“Kytec managed our migration to Azure. They did an amazing job and pulled together a project team to facilitate the implementation of the project. Kytec was professional, worked to an agreed budget, a very short timeframe and quickly addressed any issues that came up along the way”.
Working with NetApp and Veeam
Part of project involved a data centre refresh deploying a cluster of NetApp storage arrays and enhancing backup and disaster recovery plans leveraging Veeam software. Kytec is a Veeam partner.
Veeam provides the flexibility of protecting any workloads from any cloud – which is key for Westmead’s hybrid cloud strategy.
Using cost-benefit analysis, WIMR evaluated multiple storage vendors but chose NetApp because of their market presence, extensive features, technical refinement and the ability to scale – which is important given the significant and growing amount of clinical and research data that will be generated over time.
Advice for others
When asked about advice for others, Usman emphasised that while cloud has definite benefits including flexibility, it is not the right solution for every situation. This is why WIMR has adopted a hybrid approach – flexibility and efficiency for the majority of their business applications combined with on-premises management of extensive and valuable data which has significant privacy and security constraints.
“I recommend every organisation thinks about their own situation and does a cost benefit analysis before making a decision. Once you go to the cloud, it’s hard to come back”.
Kytec as a key technology partner
“Both our Azure migration and data centre upgrade have improved both the efficiency and flexibility of our operations and helped us fulfil our primary purpose of generating and managing research data more effectively”. “Kytec was a key partner and trusted advisor in both projects. Their process of engagement was professional and comprehensive. They took the time to understand our organisation, gather requirements, make recommendations, deploy, and integrate the solutions and manage the testing process. It was like the Kytec team was part of our business. In the end, it’s about quality of service. We will be working with Kytec on future projects.”