Service Transition from AWS Managed Services to Microland Cloud Ops

Service Transition from AWS Managed Services to Microland Cloud Ops

Introduction

As businesses increasingly embrace cloud solutions, the choice of managed services becomes pivotal for efficient cloud infrastructure management. This case study delves into the transition of cloud infrastructure managed services for a prominent United Kingdom-based utility customer, specifically the shift from Amazon Managed Services to Microland Cloud Ops.

Background

Our client, a leading gas distribution company overseeing extensive networks in Scotland and southern England, managing over 44,000 miles of pipes and serving 5.9 million homes and businesses, faced evolving challenges. While Amazon Managed Services (AMS) provided a broad spectrum of cloud services, the need arose for more specialized and personalized support. Microland’s Cloud Ops offering, with its comprehensive suite of services encompassing DevOps, infrastructure management, automation, and cloud security, emerged as the optimal solution.

Scale of the customer environment

  • 20+ Service accounts spread across multiple regions
  • 1000+ EC2 Instances, 190+ ASG, 250+ ELBs
  • 100+ RDS instance, 40+ DevOps CI/CD Pipeline
  • 30+ Enterprise applications with three different environments each (Dev, QA, and Prod)

Problem Statement

AWS Managed Services were managing the entire cloud environment; however, the customer faced the following business challenges.

  • High operational costs with limited cost-effective initiatives across the estate.
  • Complex environment with a lack of visibility and control.
  • Lack of support from incumbent in delivering business solutions by adopting new technologies.
  • Lack of operational visibility on access provisioning and environment management due to complex non-transferrable service management layer.
  • 35000+ outstanding vulnerabilities out of which ~25% were high severity.
  • Very low patching compliance.
  • Lack of vendor initiatives for cost control and upgrade management.
  • No support for third party agents for metric data collection.

*The transition was intricate, as the cutover process differed from standard transitions, involving a strict 25-day off-boarding process from AWS. So, everything had to be planned with those timelines in mind.

**AWS Managed Services utilized a hyper-automated proprietary RFC system with the following capabilities:

  • Access provisioning
  • Instance build
  • RDS build
  • Patching of EC2 and RDS
  • Customized cloud watch monitoring
  • Customized AMI creation

So, one of the key challenges was to recreate all these automations through bespoke scripts that were developed in-house.

Proposed Solution

Microland devised a meticulously planned transition aligned with AWS Managed Service's 25-day off-boarding plan, ensuring zero-shadow support. A hyper-automated abstraction wrapper on the operating model was crafted through detailed planning workshops with the customer and AMS. Microland mobilized highly competent technical and service governance teams.

The phased transition plan included:

  • Analysis, Due diligence & Assessment

A thorough examination of the current environment, access, automation, deployment, and services provided by AWS Managed Service to identify potential challenges and risks. This enabled Microland to create a detailed, customized phase-wise transition plan that minimizes any possible disruptions during the process.

We also had to factor-in exceptional circumstances like no formal Knowledge Transfer and zero Shadow Support by incumbent vendor.

Implementation

  • Planning

Designing a transition plan tailored to meet the specific needs of AMS, incorporating a detailed timeline, milestones, and considerations for the design of new access provisioning, Active Directory management, ITSM tool categorization, and ticket routing.

  • Service Transition

Executing the transition in a phased approach, moving from Dev-Test to QA and finally to Prod to mitigate any potential risks.

  • Post transition activities & Validation

Conducting thorough testing with application support and business users for every account and environment/application, live troubleshooting, and error mitigation to minimize downtime.

Go-live

The completion of key milestones, user acceptance, Risk Register sign-off, and handover to operations marks formal Go-Live.

  • TCO reduction by 40% from Day 1 of cutover to Microland Cloud Ops.
  • Implementation of instance scheduler resulted in savings of $60K per year.
  • Mitigation of 26,000+ vulnerabilities in the environment
  • Closure of 6000+ incidents and service requests annually with 99% SLA adherence.
  • Highly customizable personalized AWS support for adding/removing new services, quick deployment of new infrastructure, and supporting developer teams for testing and deployments.

 

The successful completion of this project positioned Microland as a strategic partner capable of delivering specialized cloud services. The success of this transition underscores Microland’s commitment to delivering value-driven solutions, navigating complex transitions with precision, and ensuring enhanced operational efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and future scalability for our esteemed clients across the industry. 

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