Like many leading enterprises, the University of Nottingham (UoN) is like a ‘small city’ with its own unique operational and organisational priorities (managing catering, communication infrastructure, transport, real estate, personnel, finance and more). In addition, UoN was facing many IT integration challenges in common with large corporate organisations.
Historically, integrations at UoN had used a point to point approach that has evolved in response to requirements for rapid delivery developed in a tactical manner, resulting in a complex system landscape. As system complexity grew and technical debt was accrued, excess cost and risk became associated with system maintenance and updates.
UoN wanted to evolve their approach to integration to centralise and better coordinate University data within and between systems.
A platform for integration & innovation
We built a bespoke integration platform in Microsoft Azure, enabling UoN to democratise and integrate data from a range of critical systems of record (SoRs), improving their student/employee experiences and driving their digital transformation.
Platform Selection Strategy
Like most organisations looking at systems integration, UoN wanted to understand which solution was best suited for their organisation. We undertook an in-depth analysis of the university’s infrastructure and business/technical requirements. We also evaluated a range of solutions available on the market, including industry-leading iPaaS (integration platform as a service) products. We worked closely with the university’s infrastructure and IT teams, defining the opportunity to engineer a bespoke PaaS first solution in Microsoft Azure.
Engineering the platform
Using the latest in Azure technology, we created a custom platform using API Management (APIM), Service Bus, Data Factory, Cosmos DB and more. We prioritised integrations with two key systems of record, ingesting, integrating and processing data from across the university. Managing the entire process from end to end in Azure DevOps, using principles of Infrastructure as Code and automation, provided the basis for rapid but safe development and testing and allowed for increased speed of delivery and secure deployments.
Centre of Excellence
Post-delivery of the platform, we’re continuing our partnership with UoN to create a Centre of Excellence (CoE) within the university. Sharing best practices and providing UoN with architectural ownership of the solution, allowing their teams to take control of future integrations as they continue their transformation journey.
Innovation out of the box
With help from our cloud experts, UoN has been able to completely transform the way that data is integrated within the university. By providing a secure and highly performant platform they have liberated and democratised data allowing them to better-leverage information from across the organisation.
We’re continuing to work in partnership with UoN to help modernise their infrastructure as well as designing and developing state of the art applications.
Senior Project Manager at UoN
By focusing on taking the right integration approach, we’ve been able to help UoN to leverage the benefits of the cloud and supercharge their digital transformation. Organisations in any sector can benefit from a bespoke integration platform.
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