Fresenius Kabi Case Study

Requirement: Network Consolidation

Requirement: Network Consolidation

Fresenius Kabi chose leading Converged ICT Services Provider GCI to consolidate the infrastructure from three separate locations into a single point of contact for a new data network infrastructure, plus implement a migration path for the legacy switches.

The Client

Fresenius Kabi is a global healthcare company that specialises in life-saving medicines and technologies for infusion, transfusion and clinical nutrition. Its products and services are used to help care for critically and chronically ill patients, and the company has a strong "caring for life" corporate philosophy.

To improve operational efficiencies, Fresenius Kabi decided to merge three existing locations in Cheshire into a new purpose-built site which included general office facilities, warehousing and high-tech “clean room” manufacturing areas. To support the company’s operational workflow, Gigabit Ethernet was needed to desktop workstations and PCs, along with a flexible and secure wireless network for mobile working. The consolidation from three sites into one also posed a challenge for Fresenius Kabi’s Voice communications as the company wanted to avoid disruption to day-to-day call handling, as well as the high costs associated with a brand-new voice switch and new handsets for an increased number of users.

Technical Solution

GCI carefully consulted with Fresenius Kabi and recommended a single point of contact which could be trusted with the provision of new data network infrastructure, plus a migration path for the legacy switches. GCI designed the network topology to meet Fresenius Kabi‘s connectivity requirements and proposed that the CAT6 cabling of the new building should be split into a number of phases to match the building contractor’s project plan. To ensure resilience and future proofing, GCI used a 10Gbps solution for the network backbone with a 1Gbps failover capability. Additionally, Fresenius Kabi was provided with Ethernet switching fabric, as well as the secure segregated wireless 802.11bg network which covers various roles, including an additional “guest” internet network as well as the providing access to the corporate network.

To reduce further cabling expense and timescales, GCI implemented Power over Ethernet (PoE) to the wireless base station controllers, resulting in a homogenised cabling network with a 25-year manufacturer’s guarantee. A consolidation plan was devised and implemented for the three Voice switches, meaning that the company’s original investment was optimised and the useful life of the equipment cost-effectively extended.

Success and Company Benefits

Fresenius Kabi now has a resilient, secure and future-proof network that delivers plenty of bandwidth to the users’ workstations and PCs. The network has been segmented into VLANs to facilitate different work zones and the overall high quality of the installation has eliminated physical network issues. This major infrastructure project was completed on time and to budget, which has enabled the efficiencies originally planned to be realised with minimal disruption to day-to-day operations. Operational Expenditure has been reduced by consolidating three networks onto one and the previous three voice switches into one. Staff can be more flexible in where they work and are therefore more productive, and the wireless network even allows them to work more flexibly around the site. They also benefit from a much more responsive network that has resiliency at its core so that network outages won’t affect their productivity.

Mike Reardon, Manager of Infrastructure & Support for Western Europe, said: “Throughout the project GCI were very helpful and flexible when required to fall in with new requirements and ever-changing deadlines. The project was completed without any problems and we are still using GCI today.”

 

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