As chief information officer for one of the largest sugar producers in the United States, Don Whittington has managed his share of challenging IT projects. But few have rivaled Florida Crystals Corporation’s (FCC’s) SAP migration from a 100 percent physical environment to a multi-tenanted, infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) cloud managed by Virtustream.
IT teams had to virtualize FCC’s SAP environment for the first time. They needed to maintain business operations for thousands of SAP users in three countries, and avoid disrupting critical development projects that were on 24-hour-a-day schedules. They also had to keep terabytes of data in sync while moving it from a competitor’s data centers to Virtustream’s hosting environment in Virginia as well as to a new, cloud-based disaster recovery (DR) center in San Francisco.
“The key piece of advice,” Don says, “is to be an active participant in managing the project. Make sure there is a defined escalation process. Choose your vendor carefully, and thoroughly vet them to ensure that the cloud you’ll use is enterprise-class: secure, compliant, dynamic, and resilient, with application-level service-level agreements and good economics.”
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