Creating the Digital Backbone for A Leading American Environmental Services Provider enabling true Business Agility & Customer Experience

Microland not only managed to achieve the transformation project timelines but also reduced their IT operating cost by 65% and increased their operational agility manifold. 

Also, Microland managed to

  • reduce per site deployment duration from 90 days to 2 days
  • upgrade configuration standards and OS patches in 75% less time than it used to take when done manually
65%
IT operation cost reduced
75%
less time to upgrade configuration standards and OS patches
Problem Statement

With a large network of offices and operationally critical sites catering to the everyday needs of millions of customers spread across the continent, the customer was under tremendous pressure due to the following,

  • Their network largely consisted of legacy MPLS connections; with severe bandwidth utilization issues causing significant impact on the employee productivity and operations of the trucking fleet.
  • The incumbent transport provider also provided NOC services, which were slow and reactive in their support and often charged significant amount for changes.  
  • The customer had to completely transform network infrastructure in 1200 sites – including circuits, LAN, and WAN – all in under 12 months
  • By January 2019, the customer was to have performed POCs at 100 sites the year before to prove & validate the new SDWAN technology, but they had only executed 3 of the 100 sites.

 

Client

The customer is an environmental services provider operating in US and Canada. The customer offers waste management services to over 21 Million customers including residential, industrial & municipal customers through its fleet of 26000+ connected collection and transfer vehicles, ~300 landfills, 140+ recycling plants, 100+ landfill gas projects and 6 power production plants. 

 

Microland Solutions

The customer was aware that transforming 1200 sites in under a year was a herculean task. Microland quickly scaled up a team of 20+ engineers and began to collaborate deeply with the customer & their chosen technology provider – Fortinet.  Despite not having deployed Fortinet SD-Branch technology in the past, Microland had plenty of experience in the process of deploying SDWAN.  We knew that the key to achieving customer’s goal had everything to do with creating a project plan with an excruciating level of detail, and then being extremely agile in executing it.  

To achieve the targeted timelines, Microland had to achieve a velocity of 15 sites per day with minimal impact to the business due to network downtimes, so all transformation-related activities had to be done during off-business hours.

  • From planning perspective, it was crucial for Microland to understand the requirements, supply chain capabilities of Fortinet as well as the resources required for Project Management & onsite & offshore technical support 
  • From design perspective, it was critical to understand the existing configuration at all their locations; assimilate them into design patterns, test the dominant patterns in a lab environment – not only from a technology perspective but also the operational process to deploy the technology
  • From project plan perspective, Microland had to create a detailed site-wise plan that could achieve the velocity required to complete the network transformation within the timelines and budget allocated. 
  • From deployment perspective, it was vital to have an agile project plan to achieve velocity of transforming 15 sites/day; accounting for all associated risks which could cause delays including site readiness, logistical issues etc.

 

Business Outcomes

Microland not only managed to achieve the transformation project timelines but also reduced their IT operating cost by 65% and increased their operational agility manifold. 

Microland managed to

  • reduce per site deployment duration from 90 days to 2 days
  • upgrade configuration standards and OS patches in 75% less time than it used to take when done manually

More importantly, the project helped drive business productivity into customer’s critical sites.  The customer no longer required personnel to be onsite to control compactors in the landfills, they could be working from home or anywhere – a huge advantage in a Covid-19 world.  

Rapid site deployment rate brought about new capabilities in Business Continuity Planning as well as greatly reducing merger & acquisition execution to integrate networks for the customer. One such situation was the Californian wildfires, when the customer was able to respond swiftly and bring transfer stations back online withing days.

For our rapid transformation of Customer’s network, Microland won the prestigious Digital Innovation Award from ISG – one of only 25 given last year, and the only one related to network transformation.

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