GreenSquare Group has slashed its annual disaster recovery budget by almost two thirds after SystemsUp helped it move to Microsoft Azure Site Recovery (ASR).

The move to public cloud – one of the first to be made by a UK housing association – has enabled GreenSquare to close its secondary data centre and dramatically improve its recovery processes in the event that a major incident affects its IT systems.

Rob Fletcher, Group Head of ICT for GreenSquare, explains, “We had decided to re-orient our ICT strategy around hybrid cloud adoption to be more efficient and a move to public cloud made real financial sense. Microsoft put us in touch with the team at SystemsUp who showed us the potential of Azure Site Recovery and then worked closely with us to get us there. They planned it incredibly thoroughly and there was a huge transfer of knowledge to our engineers on site.”

SystemsUp created a Proof of Concept that demonstrated how GreenSquare’s existing infrastructure would integrate with ASR and then worked with the housing association’s internal team to implement it.

It’s been a successful move. Using Azure Site Recovery means GreenSquare no longer needs to maintain a second data centre with all the power, cooling and hardware costs that entails. This has meant a reduction in expenditure to approximately a third of what it was previously.

The key indicators for restoring data have dramatically improved – the Recovery Time Objective has been reduced from weeks to hours, while the Recovery Point Objective is down from 24 hours to just 15 minutes. GreenSquare can bring up live environments to test application and software upgrades and can live test the whole DR environment.

“Although we have a very capable on-site technical resource, this was very much new territory for us,” Rob Fletcher says. “SystemsUp brought their skills, knowledge and expertise to the table and helped prove to us that ASR would bring GreenSquare sizeable benefits. It was quite a special moment when we went live and realised our vision.”

Nick Martin, managing director of SystemsUp, adds, “We’re delighted to have been able to use our Azure expertise to help Rob and his team make a move to public cloud that has resulted in real business benefits. GreenSquare now has a Disaster Recovery plan that is more secure, more reliable and more predictable as a result of moving to Azure Site Recovery.”

Rob Fletcher of GreenSquare concludes: “We have reduced our ICT infrastructure costs and increased our business resilience. We’ve done this by using public cloud to empower our organisation and our people, and establish our credentials as a housing association that’s really leading the way through digital transformation.”

Read the full GreenSquare case study.