CAN YOU PROVIDE MORE DETAILS ABOUT THE TECHNOLOGY ENHANCEMENTS THAT WERE IMPLEMENTED

The company underwent a significant digital transformation initiative over the past 12 months to upgrade its existing technologies and systems. This was done to keep up with rapidly changing technological advancements, customer demands and preferences, as well as be able to respond faster to disruptions.

On the infrastructure side, the entire data center housing the company’s servers and storage was migrated from an on-premise model to a cloud-based infrastructure hosted on Microsoft Azure. This provided numerous advantages like reduced capital expenditure on hardware maintenance and upgrades, infinite scalability based on requirements, built-in high availability and disaster recovery features, easier management and monitoring. All virtual servers running applications and databases were migrated as-is to Azure without any downtime using Azure migration services.

The network infrastructure across all offices locally and globally was also upgraded. The outdated VPN routers and switches were replaced by new software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) technology from Cisco. This provided a centralized management of the entire globally distributed network with features like automated path selection based on link performance, application-level visibility and controls, built-in security capabilities. Remote access for employees was enabled through Cisco AnyConnect VPN client instead of the earlier hardware-based VPN devices.

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The company’s main Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, which was an on-premise infrastructure of SAP ECC 6.0, was migrated to SAP S/4HANA Cloud hosted on Azure. This provided the benefits of the latest SAP technology like simplified data model, new capabilities like predictive analytics, real-time analytics directly from transactions and improved user experience. Critical business processes like procurement, order management, financials, production planning were streamlined after redesigning them as per S/4HANA standards.

Other legacy client-server applications for functions like CRM, project management, HR, expense management etc. were also migrated to Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) models like Salesforce, MS Project Online and Workday respectively. This relieved the burden of managing these complex on-premise systems in-house and provided a much more user-friendly experience for remote users. Regular upgrades, enhancements and integrations are now managed by the SaaS vendors directly.

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On the endpoint management front, the company shifted from traditional on-premise endpoint management software and anti-virus solutions to the Microsoft Intune service for mobile device management along with Microsoft Defender antivirus. All laptops and desktops were enrolled into Intune which provided features like remote wiping, configuration management, application deployment, inventory tracking on a single view. Defender antivirus was installed across all machines replacing the earlier McAfee solutions for unified protection.

The company’s website platform was rearchitected from a monolithic architecture to a microservices-based model and migrated to AWS. Individual functions like user profiles, shopping carts, master data management etc. were broken out as independently deployable services with REST APIs. This provided scalability, easier maintenance and round-the-clock availability. The front-end website code was upgraded from classic ASP to modern ASP.NET core framework for better performance and security.

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Machine learning and AI capabilities were introduced by leveraging Azure Kubernetes Service and Azure Machine Learning services. A recommendation engine was built using deep learning models based on customer purchase history which is integrated into the online shopping experience. Predictive maintenance of manufacturing equipment is done through IoT sensors feeding data to ML models for anomaly detection and predictive failure alerts.

On the collaboration front, the entire team moved to O365 including SharePoint Online, Teams, Stream along with upgraded hardware in the form of Surface devices. This facilitated remote working at scale along with seamless communication and content sharing across globally distributed teams during the pandemic.

Through these wide-ranging IT infrastructure upgrades, the company has transformed into a secure, scalable and future-ready digital enterprise leveraging the latest cloud services from Microsoft, AWS and other SaaS providers. This has empowered faster innovation, better customer experiences and business resilience.

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