The Samvardhana Motherson Group (SMG) is a dynamic enterprise providing a diversified product range to multiple industries, with the automotive industry being its mainstay. With more than 100 companies in the group, SMG is one of the largest manufacturers of exterior rear-view mirrors in the world, and it ranks amongst the top manufacturers of IP modules, door trims and bumpers in Europe. Set up in 1975, the Group has a presence in 25 countries and employs over 50.000 qualified professionals.
MothersonSumi INfotech & Designs Ltd.[MIND] is the IT arm of SMG that takes care of infrastructure, network, security, application development and its support.
Motherson Automotive Technologies and Engineering (MATE), a division of SMG manufactures a wide range of plastic components for automotive and non-automotive industries; it has 14 production units across India and each unit previously had an independent IT set up. The company was experiencing severe IT bottlenecks and this was negatively impacting the speed at which the business could grow.
“Each of our production units had its own servers, database, and applications and a dedicated team to maintain it all. The biggest challenge was to consolidate the IT infrastructure, and reduce capital expenditure. As we were planning to set up more units in future, we needed to reduce our go-to-market time,” said Harvansh Singh Sagar, General Manager, IT Infrastructure, MothersonSumi INfotech & Designs (MIND).
Faced with a situation that demanded prompt action, MIND started to look for IT solutions that could overcome the challenge confronting Motherson Automotive Technologies & Engineering (MATE).
MIND was using Microsoft technologies for Development and Infrastructure services and so they explored their remote desktop and terminal server solution. They also evaluated Citrix as it was a well-known name in the industry for application virtualization.
MIND conducted a Proof of Concept (PoC) of the solutions from both Citrix and Microsoft. The post PoC comparison looked at the parameters of reliability and performance and after much consideration, the business decided to go with Citrix.
The entire project had to be completed in 18 weeks. The deliverables for the project included setting up a dedicated WAN in an MPLS cloud for all 14 production units and building the database server and Citrix environment at the MIND data centre in Noida.
“The WAN set up took up the most time. The Citrix implementation and applications going live took us just 4 weeks. While we had certified people who played an important role in the project, we also had excellent help from the Citrix channel partner – ACPL,” said Sagar.
Post implementation, the company has been able to reduce the number of servers from 22 to 8. The Citrix solution is now delivering a home-grown ERP application (developed in-house by MIND) and multiple web-based applications.
Since the deployment of Citrix XenServer, the company has been able to reduce the costs of skilled manpower at all the plants. This has helped bring down the management expenses and time taken.
Using Citrix XenApp has reduced the cost of desktop management. By centralising the various applications in the MIND data centre, the IT department is now able to manage a single instance of each application instead of continuously installing applications on each desktop. Applications are now streamed directly to the desktops.
“With the deployment of Citrix XenApp, all the plants are running the same application. They are not spending money on desktop upgrades and this has resulted in capital expenditure savings,” explained Sagar.
Citrix XenServer has ensured that application requirements and expected performance levels are met. It has also enabled a faster delivery of new applications into production. MIND has been able to introduce a new method of application deployment due to being able to run multiple users.
“We are setting up a new plant at Manesar and with the infrastructure ready at the back-end; we now just have to plug in the desktops. The go-tomarket time for a new plant has reduced by approximately 3 months. Also, the Finance division and the CFO are better positioned to see the financial situation for all of the plants,” commented Sagar.
The Motherson Group has a number of global subsidiaries, including South Africa and Germany and these 2 subsidiaries are now also accessing Citrix solutions from the data centre in Noida. After looking at MATE’s success story, other group companies have also started considering implementing the Citrix environment.
After the successful deployment of Citrix XenApp and Citrix XenServer solutions, MIND is now looking at deploying Citrix XenDesktop. “We are in the process of evaluating VDI. We have consolidated our servers and the next target is to further reduce our desktop management costs. We want to be sure of the performance of virtual desktops in our Indian companies first, before we take it to our plants abroad,’’ added Sagar.
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