European Financial Services Company.

Transforming a financial services IT landscape into a cloud native enterprise architecture to better adapt to changing market demands.

The Challenge.

A European financial services company with more than 500 employees was looking to transform parts of its existing IT systems and applications to better support overall business transformation objectives.

As with most financial services companies, its IT landscape had evolved over many years, with a high level of technical complexity and many third-party integrations.

The underlying technology was built on .Net and the on-premise setup was efficient, using a dual data center set-up, allowing for a very high availability of the services offered.

Combined with complex compliance requirements from regulatory bodies, as well as challenging security and uptime requirements (such as RPO, resilience and failover requirements), both migration and modernisation became complex and challenging. Nordcloud were brought in to introduce new ways of approaching traditional solutions.

The Solution: Migrating and Replatforming to Azure.

To do this, we set up a program consisting of of four key streams, tailored to migrate and transform some 20 core banking systems:

  • Cloud Foundation – implementing a fit-for-purpose Cloud Foundation, addressing the key demands from a financial services perspective. 
  • Rehost/replatforming – migration of windows servers & SQL databases into a highly resilient Azure set-up. 
  • Refactoring – with a focus on transforming SQL databases to an Azure PaaS managed setup.
  • Application modernisation – using microservices in a true cloud native setup. 

As a guiding principle, we optimised the applications in terms of using standard hyperscaler tooling (monitoring, security, load balancing, patching and back-up services). We introduced extensive resilience, availability and security measures, including: 

  • Azure availability zones
  • New load balancing setup
  • Public cloud resilient storage offerings
  • Defender for cloud 
  • Azure Site Recovery to handle automatic recovery for failed servers. 
  • Established secure connectivity towards existing external partners and on-prem resources 

The Results.

Nordcloud were able to help transform a financial services IT landscape towards a cloud native enterprise architecture. This enabled the business goals of being able to adapt to changing market demands in a more flexible way compared to with the previous traditional setup. 

We successfully:

  • Created a secure Cloud Foundation, tailored to the requirements of the financial services industry,
  • Established a Cloud Center of Excellence, 
  • Rehosted a number of .Net applications and their databases to a modernized Azure set-up. We created a resilient, high availability set-up for some of their most demanding SLA applications, without increasing the overall TCO compared to the as-is setup. 
  • Enhanced restore granularity utilising native SQL backups 
  • Refactored some of our client’s database estate to Azure PaaS set-up, to further reduce operational costs and complexities.