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ERP Implementation

Paves the Way for Rural Expansion

A rapidly growing construction and agricultural equipment provider located in the Red River Valley, Fargo, North Dakota, was in need of a high performing, flexible datacenter that would expand with them. 

Legacy System
The company was using a legacy AS400 system, which was out-of-date and no longer able to keep up with their storage and networking needs. They were experiencing high maintenance costs and limited functionality and capability, which hindered overall business performance. As an aging system, the AS400 was incompatible with many current applications and provided limited network connectivity. With the ongoing acquisition of new companies, they really needed a scalable system that would offer flexibility for them to keep on growing. There was also a need for technology standardization to facilitate new company acquisitions, integration and shared network access. With each acquired company operating on a different platform, they needed a way to consolidate disparate systems into one streamlined and centralized application.

Redesign & Migration
Evolving Solutions overhauled the existing datacenter and conducted an enterprise-wide IT infrastructure redesign using JD Edwards ERP software. Evolving Solutions helped implement and configure the ERP solution, as well as migrating data from legacy systems.

Storage
Evolving Solutions designed a storage infrastructure using the IBM XIV storage system, X86 and IBM system p Bladecenter. This solution sets the company up for uninterrupted growth up to 79 terabytes and can be easily updated if more storage is needed later.

“With future company growth expected, it’s imperative that they have a flexible storage infrastructure in place,” said Bayne Doughty, Evolving Solutions. “We have provided them with a scalable solution that gives them room to expand.”

Virtualization
Evolving Solutions implemented an IBM System p Blade center appliance, which allows them to run five diverse workloads inside a single architecture. Their virtualized environment allows them to move running workloads between servers to maximize availability and avoid downtime, as well as dynamically adjusting server capability to meet changing workload demands. 

“Virtualization has enabled increased server utilization, a reduction in costs and enhanced performance,” said Doughty. “It’s a win-win situation from all angles.”
 
Disaster Recovery
Evolving Solutions implemented Tivoli Storage Manager 6 (TSM) for the disaster recovery solution, with data being backed up to a tape library. 

“TSM6 is particularly appropriate in this case because of the way it addresses the continuing tidal wave of data growth,” said Doughty. “With scalability a key requirement, TSM6 effectively manages growth with built-in data deduplication and increased server utilization.”

With the company’s location prone to flooding, backing up files and moving the tapes off-site is extremely important. They cannot risk their data being lost. The TSM disaster recovery solution is therefore their insurance policy.

Managed Services
Engaging Evolving Solutions to provide staff augmentation has enabled the company to monitor system performance and manage daily backups of additional data without having to increase their current IT staff. Evolving Solutions provides scheduled system healthchecks to ensure systems are running at their optimum performance and that files are being backed up successfully.  

Summary of Benefits
  • Consolidation
    Streamlining and integration of disparate systems
  • Scalability
    Room to grow without having to implement a “forklift upgrade”
  • Enhanced Performance
    Virtualization has increased server utilization
    Network capacity eliminates bottlenecks and downtime
  • Network Connectivity
    Disparate dealers can access information remotely
    Fast access to company data
  • Cost Savings
    Savings in systems maintenance costs  following AS400 decommissioning
  • Managed Services
    Scheduled healthchecks to monitor system performance