It's life Jim, but not as we know it
Computer systems have a lifecycle. They’re created, used and, eventually, decommissioned – the system’s “death”. Some are short-lived, such as a system fulfilling a proof of concept or another temporary requirement.
Others remain in use for decades, often for the prosaic reason that the system works and the risk or cost of replacement is unjustified. The US Department of Defence’s MOCAS contract-management system was launched in the 1950s and is still operational.
However, most key back office systems are not so long-lived and end of life is rarely straightforward. Historical records must often be retained for legislative purposes or for internal recordkeeping. The production system may have been decommissioned but it, or at least the system’s data, must persist in some form. That creates challenges for businesses that want to minimise the cost and effort expended on supporting archive data in Oracle databases:
- In what form should the archive data be retained and how will data be accessed, by whom and how frequently?
- How can the cost of future support be minimised while keeping the archive data available?
- How will aging Oracle technologies be supported without retaining specialist skills just to service legacy systems?
- Can the system be hosted without relying on expensive proprietary hardware?
- How will the risks presented by aging hardware be minimised?
- How can the cost of Oracle software licensing and support be minimised?
Although different to the usual production Managed Service, Claremont’s customers benefit from the same service-levels when we support their archive systems:
- Our UK-based, highly experienced Oracle experts are dedicated to the support role and deliver the highest quality proactive services.
- All support is delivered within a service management and service delivery framework based on ITIL. Service managers ensure we deliver the specific services expected by and tailored to each customer.
- Our service level agreements provide meaningful assurance, for example including guaranteed incident resolution times and Oracle system availability.
- Customers typically benefit from 50% cost savings compared to delivering Oracle support services in-house or using system integrators.
Claremont's Managed Service
As part of supporting the full Oracle systems lifecycle, and regardless of whether the system is Oracle E-Business Suite, another packaged application or a bespoke Oracle system, Claremont’s Managed Services team helps customers address these challenges.
We work with customers to identify their requirements for data retention and availability. For example, will data be retained solely for legislative compliance or because users may require regular access? That may determine whether a complete working system, including userfriendly front-end, must be retained or whether only data is required and custom extracts can be produced if ever required.
If only the data, and not the full system, is required, this gives significant opportunities to reduce the hosting and software footprint, simplifying the system and reducing costs. That cost reduction can extend to software licensing.
For example, Oracle’s support & maintenance is usually not required. Furthermore, software licensing may be scaled down, for example using Oracle Standard Edition database instead of Enterprise Edition, allowing high value licenses to be used elsewhere.
Claremont’s Managed Service team supports and, optionally, hosts customers’ archive systems.
We provide the limited support required to ensure these systems remain secure and available for whatever period the data must be retained. This service is pragmatically designed to avoid activities that are not required for static systems, thus minimising costs.
We host customer’s Oracle archive systems. Customers benefit from a turnkey solution, effectively “Oracle Archive as a Service”, where Claremont is responsible for all aspects of hosting and support, including worrying about how ageing systems can be hosted on future operating systems and hardware.
Choosing the Right Managed Services Provider
If you are looking for an Oracle partner who can help you with your archiving system, goes about it the right way and can back up the talk, then contact us.