SXiQ has delivered a multi-million-dollar project to migrate Orica, an Australian-based multinational corporation that is one of the world’s largest providers of commercial explosives and blasting systems to the mining, quarrying, oil and gas industries, from multiple datacentres around the world into the Cloud.

Orica’s impetus for change arose from several key business challenges, including:

  • Aging infrastructure requiring a large capital investment to keep current
  • Technology landscape was increasingly fragmented with multiple disparate products adding unnecessary complexity with legacy support challenges
  • The traditional delivery model was inflexible and unable to support global application teams’ requirement for speed and agility
  • The strategic requirement to lower overall ICT costs while improving responsiveness and consistency of service

To address these business challenges, Orica made the transformational decision to pursue a cloud-first strategy and exit its existing legacy datacentres, selecting AWS as its preferred cloud platform for all non-SAP applications whilst, in parallel, uplifting its traditional operating model to introduce a more modern Cloud-centric practice.

SXiQ led the solution development and delivery of both the platform and people transformation, which consisted of five key activities:

  1. Rehost, Re-platform and Refactoring of over 50 key business applications and 26 infrastructure services, across hundreds of virtual machines, that support business functions including Manufacturing, Supply Chain, Commercial/Marketing, Finance and Digital into a new multi-region AWS tenancy
  2. Establish Orica’s “Cloud Centre of Excellence” (CCoE) to provide the cross-functional governance framework and innovation hub to enable continuous service improvement and adoption of new technologies
  3. Design and Implement an Infrastructure-as-Code (IaC) methodology and toolset using Terraform and Ansible to change how Orica’s Engineering and Operational teams manage the lifecycle of cloud resources
  4. Perform physical decommission of each datacentre co-lo tenancy including asset inventory, environmental disposal, and removal of physical racking

Orica selected SXiQ for this project based on its experience across large-scale, complex, mission-critical systems, combined with its strength in cloud and datacentre technologies, to deliver an end-to-end solution.

We believe it’s our combination of discipline built over years of implementing large-scale, mission-critical systems plus our practical innovation and agility which set us apart”, says SXiQ Managing Director John Hanna. “Orica is innovating on every front and this project will enable the team to drive their transformation at an even greater pace.  SXiQ is proud to be one of Orica’s innovation enablers,” he added.

SXiQ delivered this complex, global scale program, in under 15 months with the following results:

  1. Cost transparency – Greater visibility of hosting costs, through the decommissioning of datacentre facilities and transforming 3rd party legacy services to cloud-native services.
  2. Simplification – Reduction in the number of disparate technology silos to simplify operational support and provide a more consistent service to the business across each global region.
  3. Improved Agility – Enable new workloads to be deployed rapidly based on defined architecture patterns, using automation tools to manage the deployment lifecycle.
  4. Enhanced Security and Recoverability – Improved availability and recoverability of applications through the adoption of secure builds, Multi-Availability Zone designs, and cloud-native recovery capabilities.
  5. Cloud-First– Orica is now positioned to enable new workloads to be deployed to cloud infrastructure, inheriting the benefits of Infrastructure-as-Code, built-in HA/DR, security, and operational automation associated with the new platform. Orica now enjoys a truly modern cloud infrastructure hosting environment.

SXiQ has successfully delivered a significant key pillar in Orica’s IT Digital Strategy, enabling Orica to deliver on its purpose to make its customers successful, every day, all around the world.

Orica’s Vice President – Information Technology & Cyber Security Jamie Rossato stated “This is a crucial, foundational step in Orica’s digital transformation journey. It has unlocked cost savings, business agility & unlimited potential for innovation, delivered with confidence by our partner SXiQ who have played a significant role in helping us achieve this critical milestone on our journey.”

Orica’s cloud journey does not end at a technology uplift. SXiQ is continuing to support Orica in the uplift of skills and processes, building a new Cloud Centre of Excellence that will deliver a true Cloud DevOps capability in order to ensure the benefits of cloud hosting are realised, and protected as Orica begins to innovate on this platform.

The future is looking bright as Orica moves to take full advantage of the public cloud technologies and the innovation flexibility it brings.

SXiQ Client Principal Paul Campisi said, “The SXiQ team has done an amazing job to lead Orica’s move globally, out of the datacentre and into the cloud.”

About SXiQ

SXiQ has developed numerous specialisations within its cloud practice, to provide wide-ranging solutions, from cloud migrations, SAP-in-the-cloud, cloud cost optimisation, and cloud containerisation solutions, allowing large organisations such as Orica to realise true innovation velocity, and improving investment in the cloud and driving best possible value from IT spend.

For more detail on this project or for industry comment from John Hanna, please contact kbishop@sxiq.com.au.

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