Citihub Consulting has built an excellent reputation helping every kind of financial institution solve complex business and technology challenges. The skills and expertise developed in our engagements have proved highly relevant in delivering successful large-scale projects in other sectors, including government, education, legal, gaming & healthcare services.
Charting a Path to the Cloud for Tier 1 Bank
A US-headquartered Tier 1 bank approached Citihub to establish a reference architecture and plan for the implementation of a global private cloud technology platform for use across all its investment banking operations. The bank was initially looking to leverage existing surplus compute resources – in particular, failover facilities that lay largely idle – to meet growing demand for IT capacity in the most cost-effective way possible. In addition, it wanted to assist its developers with self-provisioned and standardised resources that would speed time-to-market for new developments and enable innovation. Longer term, the bank wanted a vision for its IT operations that would combine the benefits of both private and public cloud infrastructures, enabling the business to scale its IT capacity both rapidly and cost effectively.
How Citihub Consulting Helped
Citihub began by working with the client to establish the desired end-state for the project. Our consultants conducted a thorough assessment of the bank’s requirements, speaking to all relevant stakeholders to understand each of the problems the bank was looking to solve. This information then fed into a reference architecture, which outlined all the necessary components needed to build and manage the private cloud – from the physical facilities, compute, network and storage resources, all the way through to virtualisation resources, operating system requirements, service and technology management components. With that architecture defined and agreed upon, the next step was to detail the features and functions for each aspect of the architecture, and to carry out a gap analysis against the bank’s current infrastructure to identify areas that required further investment. This information was then used to support Citihub’s Accelerated Vendor Discovery (AVD) methodology, which ensured the bank could quickly identify the right technology partners to fill gaps in their capabilities and achieve their target architecture. The complexity of the vendor landscape and sophisticated nature of the solution made this particularly challenging. However, throughout the process Citihub kept the bank focused on practical and achievable goals, and presented a clear roadmap to help them achieve them. With implementation plans completed, attention then focused on establishing the longer term vision for the bank’s global IT operations.
Defining the right strategy and reference architecture
Cloud technology can offer great benefits to IT organisations – better utilisation of existing resources, improved scalability and faster timeto-market. But those benefits can only be realised when private clouds are well designed and cater to the right use cases. Citihub ensured that the client had the right reference architecture to achieve all the benefits that cloud technology has to offer.
Establishing a clear roadmap for implementation
Having the right strategy is important. But a clear roadmap is essential if firms are to realise their strategic goals. Citihub Consulting developed a roadmap for this client, ensuring that the right features and functions were defined, and the right technology partners could be selected to satisfy those requirements. Using Citihub’s tried and tested methodology, the bank was then able to quickly narrow down a list of 100 potential vendor partners and select the five most appropriate for the job – rapidly accelerating the implementation process.
Setting a long-term vision
Encumbered by complex legacy systems, organisational structures and regulatory constraints, the path to the cloud remains cluttered with obstacles. It is vital that firms have a clear long-term vision that sets out where their IT organisation is headed – allowing them to navigate organisational, regulatory and technical obstacles, while remaining focused on that vision. Citihub provided the bank with this vision – setting the bank’s sights on combining the benefits of both private and public cloud infrastructures, and making sure day-to-day technology decisions across its operations were taken with that direction in mind.