eRSA: A Case Study
eRSA is a South Australian provider of high-performance computing, data management, software development and consultancy. They provide an advanced suite of ICT tools to a host of businesses, government bodies and researchers such as Flinders University, the University of Adelaide and University of South Australia.
The Digital Embassy were approached to assist with the consolidation of their many website systems, databases and web application services into one central platform and resource. This digital transformation initiative was designed to enable the sharing of data across multiple areas of the business, and to streamline business processes in order to deliver workflow efficiencies and additional functionality for users and researchers.
eRSA’s array of existing web based systems operated completely independent of each other with no overall holistic solution or approach. The structure consisted of a number of independent CMS platforms, data sources, applications and external components built with separate features and databases.
The Integration of all the existing systems to a single portal solution powered by a highly robust CMS platform would greatly simplify operations and reduce management inefficiencies and maintenance costs. The new web portal would allow for eRSA to have a central point of access to multiple data sources across the organisation as well as providing improved user management, content and reporting functionality.
The Digital Embassy’s largest challenge in this project was to define and incrementally execute the extensive depth of integration required to achieve the project outcomes. The integration requirements would also need to support the existing Microsoft-based infrastructure SQL Server in place at eRSA, as well its ability to accommodate the future adoption of new Microsoft based systems such as Office 365, SharePoint and Dynamics.
To obtain and define a clear understanding of the requirements and scope, it was determined that a digital strategy process provided the eRSA stakeholders with a platform to convey business and process ambitions. This information would facilitate the selection of an appropriate CMS solution whilst enabling The Digital Embassy to forecast key deliverables relating to business development features, marketing initiatives and workflow processes.
A phased incremental approach was outlined based on project and client priorities to deliver completed elements in an ongoing, agile manner. This was to address the depth of integration and quantity of project outcomes.
Key Criteria for Choosing Kentico
At the conclusion of the digital strategy it was identified that the Kentico Enterprise CMS would provide the most suitable, and adaptable foundation framework for the creation of the new eRSA portal.
This was due to Kentico ASP.NET platform integration compatibility with existing Microsoft-based infrastructure SQL Server in place at eRSA, as well its ability to accommodate the future adoption of new Microsoft based systems planned for integration such as Office 365, SharePoint and Dynamics.
Kentico would provide the solid basis for seamless integration both initially and in future phases due to being built on the Microsoft.net stack.
As Kentico Gold Partners, it was established that this CMS would allow a seamless integration with existing user directories and policy frameworks that were already in place within eRSA. This Digital Business Transformation methodology would allow greater reduction in the manual management of the user details and access functionality, creating instant efficiencies for the client.
Projects, created via the CRM and seamlessly pulled into one central dashboard within the portal, provide a consolidated overview of associated documents, materials and reportable data. Each project has attributed researchers and collaborators assigned to it, allowing the portal to act as a central resource for multiple stakeholders to track, and contribute, toward a project.
Data presentation capabilities were also improved as a result of the development, allowing various sources of data from eRSA to provide real information to all stakeholders, including users, administrators, management and board members as well as potential new users researching the services available.
The new eRSA framework will allow for multiple systems, data and content to live in one holistic solution.
By linking the portal with data from the CRM and Active Directory, it provides the ability to authenticate users, and align associated projects, services and products seamlessly for all users both internally and externally.
The portal has increased efficiencies for all users through the automation of previously manual tasks. It will provide the ability for marketing and business development staff at eRSA to have a valuable tool that assists in the promotion of their services in order to help drive more leads.
This unique and industry leading portal continues to provide an ongoing revenue stream for eRSA, along with savings from new efficiencies, which will build upon an already growing reputation for excellent services in the research field.