ASX-listed company GWA Group is a leading supplier of bathroom, kitchen and household fittings, offering services for three decades. The company constantly seeks ways to build a better business. They are the business behind recognised brands such as Caroma, Dorf and Methven, so GWA is now exploring how intelligent technologies can be implemented to streamline operations and boost business outcomes.
Part of this business development included a digital transformation involving the wholesale transition of information systems to Microsoft Azure. This work has set the business up for current and future success, empowering it as it expands into new areas and opportunities.
Ryan Clarke, GWA’s platform project manager, enlisted Quorum to manage and optimise the company’s Azure-based solutions. When Clarke joined the company in 2017, GWA used Google products, limiting the company’s needs. ‘Even for someone like myself with a technology background, you had to come in and retrain yourself on everything. We needed to transition across to something that was more modern, more easily adopted,’ shared Clarke.
- Quorum worked with GWA to move them from Google into Office 365, beginning a progressive shift away from its own data centres and into Microsoft Azure. This move immediately led to a dramatic reduction in the risk of company information reaching suppliers and customers, with Office 365 offering more secure access to shared documents.
- COVID-19 brought major impacts to GWA’s team, with only their warehouse personnel physically going to work. Even their call centre staff, located across Australia, moved into using Telstra Calling for Office 365 in order to work safely and productively from home.
‘GWA has a history of acquisitions and divestitures, and I don’t think that’s going to change,’ said Mark McLean, Managing Director of Quorum. ‘The cloud platform and the whole modern workplace journey has enhanced their ability to onboard potential acquisition targets very easily.’
Mark notes that key to GWA’s success is its agility by nature, with much of the red tape associated with digital transformation stripped away. ‘I think that’s been a big part of their success to be agile within their own organisation, to adopt those technologies quickly and get the return on investment,’ stated McLean. ‘From a people perspective, going all in on the Microsoft Cloud has effectively allowed their team to be more efficient. The integrated nature of the platform enables simplified, optimised and consolidated management, leaving the company’s IT team to focus on more strategic technology initiatives.’
- GWA has continued to extract maximum value from their investment in Azure and Microsoft 365, with its E5 licence allowing it to unlock key solutions, such as Teams Calling, Analytics and enhanced security.
- The business has benefited from the consolidation of security tools, decommissioning third-party anti-virus tools and instead relying on Microsoft Defender ATP for Antivirus and Intune for modern device and mobile management. Azure Active Directory identity underpins the entire solution.
- Support staff working remotely are now making use of Windows Virtual Desktop, along with Azure VPN.
- GWA’s Azure digital platform supports the company’s ongoing expansion and business strategy, with a digital infrastructure set up to support new acquisitions and ventures.
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