Serviceworks Management, a Computershare company, is a leading business partner to the utilities industry. They specialise in the provision of innovative business solutions to a range of utilities providers around the world. Serviceworks was initially created in 1999 during the privatisation of the Victorian retail energy market, to help utilities navigate the evolving maze of complexities and challenges and to assist each utility in achieving improved customer experience and profitability. Serviceworks has since applied its expertise and expanded its offerings to provide water utilities and energy retailers with innovative, outsourced customer management services and related support infrastructure. This includes a comprehensive range of specialist consulting, technology, multi-channel customer service, billing, payments and credit management.
In 2011, as a result of rapid growth, Serviceworks decided to consolidate its three offices in West Melbourne to a new head office on St Kilda Rd. This included migrating its nine utility platforms and supporting infrastructure located in datacentres in the three offices. Typically a utility platform consists of 30–35 servers, supporting the Production, Reporting/BI, Test and Development environments, plus integration with shared services and external parties (such as market operators, print houses, payments, etc.). In addition, utility platforms are used heavily for client operations during the day and for overnight processing and billing operations in the evening. As a result, migrating these platforms is a complex process, requiring extensive planning to ensure operations continue uninterrupted.
Acurus assembled a project team of solutions architects, systems engineers and network engineers to develop the datacentre design, migration strategy and planning for the migration of the utility platforms to the new data centre. Serviceworks operations teams, customers and platform vendors were also engaged to provide the required inputs. Using Acurus’ breadth of knowledge and experience of the utilities retail sector, the new datacentre infrastructure was designed and implemented to best practices. The utility platforms were migrated in separate programs, in conjunction with the staff relocations to the new head office. During each migration, the stakeholders were informed of the plan and impact of the migration, outage windows were clearly understood and rollback timing and plans confirmed. Where required, platforms were pre-staged and migrated in a short time period to minimise impact on operations
Over the nine month migration period, Acurus worked with Serviceworks, their customers and vendors to ensure that the complex migration was completed on time with no impact to Serviceworks operations and critically, no interruption to their clients operations. As a result of the work completed, many of the data centre and facilities related issues that Serviceworks endured were resolved in the new data centre design and provided a platform for Serviceworks’ next phase of growth. Acurus received several appreciation letters from Serviceworks and its customers, a recognition of the team and successful outcome of the project.