Synextra moves Antonelli to the cloud.
Antonelli is a fourth-generation family business manufacturing ice cream cones. Based in the North West of England it is the only UK manufacturer of wafer, sugar and waffle cones and supplier and ice cream ingredient. The company has 40 employees and operates from two sites. It also has five business relationship managers based remotely.
Like many companies, Antonelli had its own on-premise server and managed its own website but had a growing requirement for more data storage as the business scaled and became increasingly complex. It needed to feel secure in the knowledge that data was backed-up securely and its IT could support growth.
“As we expanded, and the pace of technology accelerated, it became apparent that we’d need a partner alongside us who knew more about IT than we could or would want to know. We’re not IT experts, but it was clear we needed help from one,” explains David Antonelli, managing director, Antonelli.
“We’ve doubled the number of employees, opened a second site and as a workforce we were increasingly working remotely and needed much greater connectivity between our sites as well as our employees. Add to that we required much more storage for our data and to know that it was securely backed-up.
“I began looking for an IT partner that could take the strain of scaling our infrastructure for us, allowing us to focus on the growth of Antonelli.”
Synextra migrated Antonelli’s data and infrastructure to a cloud-based environment and streamlined set up via Citrix Hosted Desktop, a virtual desktop infrastructure that allows users to remotely access and operate Microsoft Windows desktop via the cloud. This has helped remote working allowing the nationwide business development managers to access the organisation’s resources with a unified view.
“Connectivity is now vastly improved – access to the tools, resources, applications and data is so much easier and faster than before,” explains David.
“Our business relationship managers are working off the hosted desktop environment with access to Microsoft Teams. This provides them the ability to access the fundamental resources they need to do their job – ingredient specifications, flavours and other data and files that are shared through Citrix Sharefile.
“It’s also much easier to grant access to new employees as well as making resources available based upon the identity and role of the employee.”
“In the past, it could take as long as five minutes to log into the system remotely – whereas now it takes around 30 seconds – it’s so much easier,” said David.
Working with Synextra has provided Antonelli with many benefits. Upgrading an on-premise server set-up and moving it to the cloud has meant that maintenance of hardware is no longer required. It also means that connectivity and access to data has never been more fast or efficient. The IT infrastructure is in safe hands with knowledgeable experts who are able to see the roadmap ahead, and this has resulted in faster, more secure access as well as a more collaborative environment.
“Chris and his team at Synextra are incredibly responsive and available whenever we need them – anyone within the organisation can contact them for assistance at any time and be confident of a quick resolution,” explains David.
“Most SME’s struggle to keep pace with the IT required to move their businesses to the next stage. IT Security alone is a mine field given the levels of GDPR required as well as the requirement to connect to the banking systems with Sage Pay and the need for a secure line and back up. All of that worry is removed. We could not be without them – Synextra are our IT department!”
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