IT Infrastructure in Manufacturing: A Use Case (Part 1 of 2)

ABC Manufacturing had a decision to make. How could they effectively allocate their capital IT budget to fulfill their current needs? This blog will explore ABC Manufacturing’s existing infrastructure deployment and performance.

Background Information:

  • — ABC has two locations, Plant #1 and Plant #2. They are not geographically close to one another.
  • — At Plant #1 the two physical servers are new, while the server at Plant #2 is very outdated.

ABC had a budget set aside for technology upgrades for their organization. They chose to invest in two new servers for Plant #1. This investment was predicted to serve both locations for the traditional 3-5-year cycle. ABC primarily runs IT operations from Plant #1, with Plant #2 serving as a smaller production site.

ABC is growing faster than originally expected and becoming constrained by their current IT systems. As a result, downtime is less manageable and failure risk is increasing. Additionally, the investment in servers for Plant #1 will not meet the required production standards for both locations moving forward.

The existing structure creates a single point of failure, due to the lack of IT communication between the Plants. If a server in Plant #1 goes down, Plant #2 cannot take over the workload.  ABC became aware that their infrastructure was performing sub-optimally and creating a potentially dangerous situation in the event of failure.

In searching for a solution to overcome these issues, ABC had several concerns.

  • — They want to be sure to maximize the investment of the recently purchased servers, instead of wasting their capital budget.
  • — How do they scale incrementally without over purchasing? How do they propose a comprehensive, but cost-effective solution to management?
  • — Most importantly, the solution must address the single point of failure and downtime intolerance.

With these concerns in mind, ABC’s research led them to consider Hybrid Cloud infrastructure, which combines both physical and virtualized servers. Little did ABC know how much this type of solution could change the course of their business.

To be continued…