Facts at a glance
Size of company:
$10 billion enterprise
The client needed to consolidate its mission-critical healthcare data centers to simplify IT management and improve patient care delivery.
- Transformation strategy
- Application mapping
- Migration and logistics planning
- Project management and execution
- $7.5 million projected savings over 5 years
- 550+ applications moved successfully
- 2 data centers merged for cost efficiencies
- 93% of systems moved in allotted downtime
Insight’s Cloud + Data Center Transformation solutions help clients improve data center availability, performance and efficiency.
Today’s healthcare providers must move swiftly to stay in compliance with mandated regulations while delivering top-quality patient care. That leaves little room for delayed processes caused by aging IT infrastructure.
For those reasons, a $10 billion university healthcare enterprise that serves patients out of five medical facilities needed to modernize more than a dozen data centers in an effort to:
The university system also wanted to lay the groundwork for future IT transformation that would support continuous improvement of patient care delivery.
“We were dealing with patient care delivery systems, so we had to do everything we could to mitigate risk,” says the client’s technology director. “That meant bringing in a partner that specializes in data center consolidation and relocation.”
After a rigorous Request for Proposal (RFP) process, the organization’s technology director and his committee selected Insight for the project based on a positive cost/benefit analysis, our long history of successful project execution, and our specific experience with academic medical centers and HIPAA requirements.
Our Cloud + Data Center Transformation team recommended consolidating the two data centers in need of state-mandated updates. Doing so would involve migrating the data centers into a single co-location facility in a nearby region.
The transition would require moving more than 550 applications — from admissions, registration, telephone, X-ray and lab systems to research and education systems — without disrupting mission-critical services. But done successfully, it would slash power costs by two-thirds, free 15,500 square feet of local real estate for reuse and migrate vital healthcare delivery systems away from disaster-prone areas.
Imperative to the project, the university needed to ensure uptime for systems that enable the delivery of routine and complex medical care, including Level 1 trauma, psychiatric, pediatric and cancer treatment.
With a team of a program manager, project managers, system architects, consultants and analysts, we performed a comprehensive application inventory at the healthcare provider’s two data centers.
Our experts collaborated with client staff to identify unnecessary servers that could be decommissioned to streamline the client’s IT. We then deployed our proprietary mapping methodology to determine which applications could be safely moved together without affecting other systems. Using that information, we created a strategy for moving those application bundles in a specific sequence that would minimize risk.
With the detailed roadmap, we orchestrated a series of overlapping migration events in tandem with the client’s IT infrastructure and application subject matter experts to test the systems.
Our team designed the entire consolidation to provide the least impact to the client’s critical systems. Physical hardware moves to the new facility and to a disaster-proof site used for high-bandwidth and latency-intolerant applications took place on weekends. We timed physical to virtual migrations for application moves in order to reduce rack space and power needs.
Migration events took place with an intricate combination of logical and physical workload relocations during the medical center’s specified downtime windows — in some cases as short as two to four hours.
Due to comprehensive planning and coordination, the migration met the healthcare provider’s goal of moving 93% of systems within specified downtime windows. Cost savings started immediately after the data center consolidation and migration, as did application performance improvement.
A $7.5 million savings is projected over five years through lower energy and real estate costs, as well as more efficient rack space and facilities management.
By shifting the two data centers away from disaster-prone areas, the project not only improved the safety of critical data and systems, but it also eliminated the $30 million capital investment that would have been required to meet local building codes.
Insight “had solid processes, not only in planning and executing the project, but also in helping us communicate our plans to our clinicians, researchers, academic staff and faculty,” the client’s technology director says. “They have done this kind of project many times before, and it showed.”