Strategizing for the Shift to Public Cloud

HUB International Logo

Company

HUB International is a thriving insurance broker based out of Chicago that partners with both companies and individuals to develop and manage insurance solutions. Their 11,000 employees across North America strive to generate value and growth by providing excellent service and solutions to their clients. HUB is ranked 6th among the world’s largest insurance brokers, further proving their commitment to tailor insurance solutions and help businesses and people achieve peace of mind.

Scenario

Knowing that the business case for moving to a public cloud includes proven benefits such as reducing burden from internally managed computing resources, potentially increasing the ability to meet peak demands, reducing hardware costs, and improving business agility, HUB embraced a cloud-based strategy for its IT. Workloads with user demands in multiple locations at different times are particularly well suited for the public cloud—a scenario that suits HUB’s spread. HUB wanted to be able to achieve additional benefits from public cloud by reducing software license administration and management, integrating Microsoft Active Directory with advanced security services.

Challenges

The overall goal of HUB’s strategy was to do away with as much data center technical debt as possible. HUB expected to drastically reduce–if not eliminate–its existing data centers, to streamline IT operations, and to deliver fully configured, functional services to its business consumers. So HUB came to AHEAD experts to walk them through the foundational stage of building a scalable, secure landing zone to host applications migrated from its current data centers. AHEAD set out to help HUB to be strategically positioned to build future cloud-native service offerings.

The Solution

AHEAD collaborated with HUB to develop and support its cloud migration journey with Amazon Web Services (AWS) as the target public cloud endpoint. The design activities started with AHEAD facilitating a two-day design workshop with key stakeholders from HUB. During the sessions, AHEAD reviewed HUB’s current data center environment, AWS architecture, design principles, and available implementation options. With the goals of increasing time to value, simplifying the environment, increasing visibility, and improving manageability, many design decisions were made during these workshops.

HUB and AHEAD worked together on these decisions with the following design objectives in mind:

  • Migrate everything possible from data center to the cloud
  • Prevent the need for a hardware refresh
  • Streamline IT operations and systems management
  • Position resources as close as possible to users
  • Implement economical redundancy scenario for faster recovery from unplanned outages
  • Improve elasticity to optimize computing resources use and reduce over provisioning
  • Increase security to protect information and access without sacrificing the speed to support business needs
  • Implement a governance process to operate IT more efficiently
  • Improve service availability
  • Increase speed of infrastructure migrations for mergers and acquisitions