Supply chain risk – fuelled by digital ecosystems

If your third-party suppliers don’t have the same resilience in their security systems as you, they can be used by attackers to enter your business.

As the world becomes more digital-centric and savvy, businesses are faced with yet another paradox: the growth of their digital ecosystem. When adding parties to your supply chain, you always run the risk of expanding your risk exposure. While this is unavoidable, it is essential to identify where in a greatly extended digital enterprise inherent risk may be lurking.

According to a recent survey by Deloitte, where the consulting giant analysed an organisation’s reliance on third parties, it found that 70% of businesses today have a moderate to high dependency on external parties. Further, nearly half of the respondents (47%) to the survey said their organisations had fallen victim to some form of risk incident when using an external entity over the last three years.

There is no doubt that digital centricity is a benefit to any business, as is outsourcing non-core services to a third-party supplier. But by adding connections to other parties in your system’s ecosystem, you do start creating weaknesses in your environment that could ultimately lead to a breach. According to a study conducted by Opus and Ponemon, 59% of companies said they had experienced a data breach caused by one of their vendors or third parties.

Unfortunately, third-party risk is often overlooked. However, it could result in an exceptionally costly exercise for your business, not just in recovery from the damage caused, but also in reputational damage. Why is it overlooked? It is a considerable task to look at all of the systems and security practices of all the third-party suppliers that you add to your supply chain. Analysing the security posture of a partner, and then having to decide if it meets with your security policies, compliance frameworks and even risk appetite, can also be costly.

Your security teams generally know what the strength of your security systems is. But this can change overnight if your third-party suppliers don’t have the same resilience in their security systems and can be used as a back door for attackers to enter your business.

So, how can you fix it? Companies need a robust, dynamic and continuous third-party risk management (TPRM) programme in place that will enable them to make faster, more strategic decisions about the risk or change in a security posture of their third-party suppliers. A third-party risk programme will also ensure you stay one step ahead of bad actors by offering system visibility, as well as prepare your business for the unexpected. At Blue Turtle, we believe that every company needs third-party risk management to ensure the effective monitoring and control of external supplies that link to its supply chain.

Working with some of SA’s largest corporate businesses, we are starting to identify that third-party risk management has moved up the food chain and is fast becoming a priority for most companies today. With the proliferation of cyber attacks as the result of a third-party heavy supply chain, and regulations governing engagement with outside suppliers growing, the time has come for us to create a sub-category for this type of cybersecurity in business.

Fortunately, the tools and continuous monitoring software to execute on this already exist. All business needs to do is apply a proactive approach to regulations and adopt a strategy that pushes TPRM into all aspects of the organisation.

At Blue Turtle, we are working with an organisation called BitSight, which has a platform that provides continuous visibility across a complete supply chain, supporting a robust TPRM programme in a business. A BitSight rating is a combination of underlying risk vectors, weighted to produce an accurate rating that is highly correlated to a breach as a result of a third party. This weighting algorithm is continually updated based on new risk vectors and on new industry-centric breach data.

Because BitSight ensures that all of the data it measures against has been correlated with breaches as well as research into the security risks a third-party supply chain with security kinks can create, it indicates how various risk vectors correspond to breaches, ultimately giving a business actionable insights from the data. The knock-on effect? A simplified view of potential security risks and threats, as well as a tangible means by which to plug the security holes in a digital-centric supply chain with third-party suppliers.

Blue Turtle achieves Platinum status with the Imperva Partner Program for 2020

This status emphasises Blue Turtle as a preferred provider for the vendor’s specific brand of data protection and security solutions.

Blue Turtle Technologies is thrilled to announce that it has achieved Platinum status for the Imperva Partner Program for 2020. Blue Turtle has been an Imperva Partner for almost five years, and the company has recently been notified that it has been awarded Platinum status for the year ahead. This is based on its bookings and outstanding training achievements within the past 12 months, allowing Blue Turtle to qualify for this prestigious accolade.

Imperva provides a broad range of security solutions, which in turn provide a secure foundation to assist with proactively identifying, evaluating and eliminating current and emerging cybersecurity threats. The company’s best-in-class channel program offers partners streamlined enablement and turnkey marketing programs that provide an outstanding return on investment.

According to Stephan le Roux, Product Manager at Blue Turtle Technologies, the company’s customer base contains large key players in the banking, mining and engineering space. “Our clients use Imperva for their app and data protection, to create a robust security framework for their business,” he says.

“Our clients’ ongoing trust in us to help them secure their business end-to-end is just one reason that achieving Platinum status with Imperva is so valuable to our business, as it highlights our company as a preferred provider for the vendor’s specific brand of data protection and security solutions.”

For customers looking to deploy Imperva, this partner status provides them with the assurance that Blue Turtle offers a high degree of credibility, confidence and recognition within the market, while at the same time providing accredited channel incentives as a positive motivator for internal teams. All of which assist in ensuring that the company is able to better support customers and emphasise investment into technologies that make their businesses run better.

Today Blue Turtle focuses on delivering Imperva to clients within the financial services sector, as well as those customers who have a large bank of legacy data that they have attained over many years, which require more robust data protection and security. It helps customers better secure their environments through a three-step process that entails identifying the attack, securing the database, and lastly, installing more efficient app security and firewalls that successfully manage the data at hand.

“Recently, Kaspersky released results from its Q4 2019 DDOS attacks report, which examines attacks blocked by its DDOS Protection. The number of DDOS attacks in Q4 2018 makes up only 56% of attacks detected in Q4 2019, with almost 30% of all attacks taking place on the weekend. At Blue Turtle we understand that attackers don’t discriminate, and the attack surface is on the rise, where cyber criminals will find a way to crack a system at any time of the day. This ultimately illustrates that more than ever, there is a need for heightened security for all apps and data, no matter the size of your business or the time of day you operate in,” concludes Le Roux.

Absa Regional Operations selects KAI to deliver groundbreaking digital experiences to its customers across Africa

Absa’s virtual assistant helps customers in its African markets with their day-to-day banking needs and plans are afoot to offer transactions over chat.

Kasisto, creators of KAI, the leading digital experience platform for the financial services industry and Blue Turtle Technologies (Blue Turtle), South Africa’s leading enterprise technology partner, have announced that Absa Group Limited’s subsidiaries outside of South Africa, collectively known as Absa Regional Operations (ARO), have selected and deployed KAI, Africa’s first Conversational AI powered virtual banking assistant. ARO chose to partner with Kasisto and Blue Turtle based on KAI’s proven Conversational AI technology and Blue Turtle’s ability to assist Absa to plan, implement and transform their customer digital experience strategy.

Absa’s virtual assistant helps customers in its African markets with their day-to-day banking needs and questions. Customers can find out information about Absa’s banking services, account information, the nearest ATM, information about new products and services, what types of services require them to come into a branch, how to access mobile wallet and more, all through intuitive and intelligent digital conversations directly via the virtual assistant.

What’s more, the virtual assistant becomes more intelligent over time. In the near future, the bank plans to offer transaction inquiries, transfers and full payment fulfilment over chat. For added accessibility and ease of use, Absa’s virtual assistant will be available over the company’s Web site as well as a fully secure WhatsApp Business account.

“At Absa we believe in helping our customers bring their possibilities to life. So, when we set out on the journey to improve our customers’ digital banking experiences, we knew we needed a Conversational AI technology that was proven and a partner that was local. The partnership between Kasisto and Blue Turtle provided just that,” said Vimal Kumar, ARO Chief Executive for Retail & Business Banking, Digital and Customer Experience.

“Together we are providing Absa customers with a more personalised, digital banking experience that no other bank in the region can offer.”

With close to $100 billion in assets, approximately 40 000 employees and presence in 12 countries across Africa, Absa is a top player on the continent. Many in the market look to Absa for leadership and innovation.

“Everyone at Kasisto is excited to help power Absa’s mission with a virtual assistant that is trained on tens of millions of financial questions, and that allows Absa to deliver important self-service and financial wellness capabilities, and industry-leading digital experiences to its customers within Africa; this is an important market for us,” says Zor Gorelov, CEO and Co-Founder, Kasisto.

“We are also delighted to be working with our partners at Blue Turtle, who bring local technical expertise and know-how as we all work together to enable ARO to leverage the power of Conversational AI.”

Justin Arnoldi, Head of Digital Transformation at Blue Turtle, adds: “Our passion for innovation and customer success, and our partnership with Kasisto, has made us a great partner for ARO as it brings a new digital banking experience, based on a Conversational AI-powered and industry-leading virtual assistant, to their customers.

“Our strategy is to help banks like Absa integrate meaningful digital solutions that help them to engage, transact, gain insight and more accurately predict customer behaviour. We look forward to working with Kasisto and ARO to bring further digital possibilities to life.”

In addition to Absa, Manulife, DBS Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, TD, Emirates NBD’s Liv, and many other financial institutions use KAI to deliver intelligent virtual assistants and digitally immersive experiences to its clients. These experiences have proven to deliver impressive business outcomes by engaging with customers via omni-channel capable, intelligent human-like virtual assistants that:

Increase digital engagement, leading to more immersive Conversational AI experiences.

Increase brand loyalty and banking value by delivering financial wellbeing-related insights.

Reduce call centre operating costs while empowering customer self-serve through AI.

“The maturing of Conversational AI technology is coming at a critical time for the financial services industry. Financial institutions are increasingly challenged to meet rising customer expectations while managing costs. Conversational AI is enabling financial institutions to strike a balance between personalisation and cost to serve,” said Alenka Grealish, senior analyst at Celent.

“Among the Conversational AI vendors, Kasisto stands out for its strong understanding of the nuances of banking-related conversations and customer intents, which helps financial institutions deliver new and important digital capabilities to their customers.”

Blue Turtle provides complete cloud management services

Full cloud management services help customers work and engage in the cloud with ease.

Issued by: Blue Turtle Technologies

Blue Turtle Technologies today announced the fifth and final pillar of its “Journey to the Cloud” programme, MANAGE, designed to provide customers “living in the cloud” with the systems and support needed to deliver high-quality and cost-effective cloud services to their business – and effectively manage cloud workloads, cloud spend and cloud service levels.

The MANAGE offering gives customers access to Blue Turtle’s experience in systems and service management, a structured approach to cloud management alongside a set of world-class software and advisory services.

“Customers understand the value of the cloud, and those that have walked through the previous phases of our Journey to the Cloud programme are now conducting business in it. However, they don’t want just to be left to handle it alone,” says Avash Maharaj, Head of Infrastructure, Cloud and Security at Blue Turtle. “Within the remit of our MANAGE service offering, they can continuously oversee their public cloud, hybrid or multi-cloud deployments.

“We want clients to know that engaging Blue Turtle is more than just a once-off, and our services are supported not only by a strong team, but through innovative software systems as well.”

The Blue Turtle approach is to maintain and manage environments across multi-cloud, hybrid and data centre virtual environments. The solution offers self-service catalogue, automated deployment and standardised workload provisioning. Additionally, with advanced consumption and cost analysis software, MANAGE provides the capability to manage and optimise IT spend across cloud, virtual, and SaaS; as well as offering full Office 365 licence management, and backup and disaster recovery.

To address the complexity of operating multi-cloud or hybrid systems, Blue Turtle provides a common approach that supports cross-platform management and ensures continuous optimisation of systems. The solution arms IT operations with the tools needed to dynamically and automatically manage workloads and assure performance – no matter where their workloads reside.

The fifth and final pillar of Blue Turtle’s client-centric cloud migration programme, MANAGE draws from the other pillars ASSESS, MIGRATE, OPTIMISE, SECURE, and expands on them to create an overall and complete vision for the cloud. Within this component of the journey, its consultants regularly re-engage with the other pillars to ensure constant optimisations, that security is always on, that new business and workloads can be migrated to the cloud and that it is continuously assessing the validity of remaining in the cloud.

“The cloud is not a destination to our managed services team. It is part of constant business evolution. When our clients are living in the cloud, we want them to know that their partner is continuously exploring ways to minimise their cloud spend, manage and secure their environment, and ensure their business is performing to the best of its ability, allowing them to innovate in their industry and digitise their business,” ends Maharaj.

Fourth pillar of of its Journey to the Cloud programme – SECURE. Blue Turtle Puts Security First for Cloud Customers

End-to-end cloud security with SECURE offering delivers comprehensive security roadmap for the cloud

Issued by: Blue Turtle Technologies

Johannesburg, South Africa, February, 2020 – Blue Turtle Technologies today announced SECURE the fourth service within its “Journey to the Cloud” programme. The SECURE service gives clients the peace of mind that their information assets are protected when navigating the cloud.

 

By leveraging Blue Turtle’s market leading security solutions, customers are provided with the technology and expertise to secure their cloud, datacentre and hybrid operations.

 

“The cloud has opened up the attack surface, presenting yet another vector that needs to be protected. Cybercriminals are sophisticated, organised and automated, and enterprises need to be far more vigilant when adopting cloud, and detailed when building a cloud security framework” states Avash Maharaj, Head of Infrastructure, Cloud and Security at Blue Turtle. “Looking at the different components – identity, access, data, workloads, configuration, network – and how these need to be architected or re-designed to meet cloud and hybrid needs is critical.

 

“At Blue Turtle we provide the capabilities to support customers in the assessment, design and transition of security to meet the challenges introduced with cloud.”

 

SECURE is part of Blue Turtle’s client-centric cloud migration programme, made up of five pillars, providing a service tailored to a customer’s unique cloud roadmap. SECURE, the fourth pillar includes not just access management, and attack identification, but amongst others workload protection, compliance, container security and advanced threat prevention.

 

The full Journey to the Cloud programme comprises ASSESS, MIGRATE, OPTIMISE, SECURE and MANAGE. Five pillars formulated to create a deep understanding of a client’s environment, deliver cost effective migration and cloud adoption, and implement the operational systems to ensure that the cloud provides the services and security required by business.

 

“So why work with Blue Turtle? We look at security strategically and tactically, we take a risk-based approach closely aligned to the NIST framework. We also take into account trends in cyber-threats, help customers get the basics right, understand the value of emerging technologies, and the criticality of automated active cyber-defence. Our teams are able to look beyond infrastructure to the application and the broader customer ecosystem – such as API’s, E-commerce, and third party solutions.

 

“This approach enables us to deliver, and execute on, plans created specifically for a customer, based on their business vertical, critical assets, risks and existing security – aligned to their current and future IT infrastructure and application landscape. This is followed up after implementation with tailored advisory and managed services. All of this ensures we create a fit for purpose security solution for our customers that extends from the datacentre to the cloud to the business ecosystem,” ends Maharaj.

The Digital Customer Experience in Banking: 2020 Outlook

Trust is no longer your differentiator.

Issued by: Blue Turtle Technologies

 

Historically, banks focused on providing a trusted service to customers and relied on messaging and reputation for this trust, to gain market share and build sustained customer loyalty. The equation here was simple, trust equals loyalty equals customer lifetime value (CLV).

In the world of Bank 1.0, trust was established by the fact that banking activities were carried out purely in a physical world. Customers would visit branches to physically deposit and withdraw funds, request a loan or discuss financial needs. The explosive growth of digital technologies has changed this dramatically – its more complex and far more competitive. The ever-changing customer needs means that customers are banking on-the-go, and through devices, mediums and channels that weren’t originally designed with banking in mind. Banks, and the banking industry as a whole, have had to adapt to this dynamic landscape to merely stay in the game.

Enter Bank 4.0, which calls for a way of thinking beyond what has ever been required before – the iterative innovation process we have grown accustomed to has worked to create incremental enhancements to our banking experiences. But it is truly customer-centric, first-principle thinking that will guide us into the future and leave the laggards chasing their tails.

The concept of customer centricity is widely spoken about in workshops, strategy sessions, board meetings, and even around the water-cooler. As easy as it may be to explain, is far more difficult to implement, let alone do well. Fundamentally successful customer experience management (CXM) is not possible without this first-principle thinking. Questions have evolved from “how can we do this better” to “how can I solve the customer’s problem, service their need in the best way possible, or create a new product to meet a future need”.

This gargantuan shift in the banking industry is epitomised by recent studies that have shown that, for the first time, we have entered an era where trust is not the chief factor considered by customers when choosing their bank. This has been usurped by customer experience (CX). Forbes captured this tenet by stating that “customers don’t care if you claim you have omni-channel or multi-channel capabilities. They only care that they can connect with you, the way they want to connect with you, and when they want to connect with you. They go through the channel that’s easiest and most convenient for them. It could be a phone, a desktop computer, a tablet – whatever communication method they are most comfortable with.”

It must be stated, however, that trust is by no means less important to banks. Trust, in the eyes and minds of the modern-day consumer, is table-stakes. It is implied and expected, and those that do not conform to a basic standard will suffer a very rapid demise.

To complicate CXM even further, banks are coming to realise that a customer’s digital experience with their bank is constantly being compared to all the digital experiences in their lives. The demanding customer expects the same (if not better) experience with their bank that they get from the likes of Netflix, Amazon, iTunes, Spotify, to name a few.

This can be seen in the data – in 2016, 89% of respondents to a Gartner study believed competition was based predominantly on customer experience, versus just 36% from 4 years prior. In addition, an IDC study revealed that worldwide spend on CX technology amounted to roughly $508 billion in 2019, with a projected compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.2% for the period 2018-2022, reaching a staggering $641 billion in 2022– making it the fastest growing enterprise application software category.

So what emerging technologies are best positioned to provide customers with the biggest impact on CX? A Gartner study revealed that in 2020 and beyond, these emerging technologies are artificial intelligence (53%), virtual customer assistants and chatbots (39%) and omnichannel engagement solutions (37%).

Banks looking to differentiate themselves through customer experience should be focused on the following:

  • Understand the shift from GUI to CUI

In the past, customers were delighted in the graphical user interface (GUI) and intuitive interactions with web and mobile applications. Oftentimes the bank with the best mobile app was perceived to be the best, or “most innovative”. Recently, customers are gravitating towards a conversational user interface (CUI), where they interact, and transact, using natural language through voice on virtual assistant devices, or chat via instant messaging apps.

  • Use technology to combat the trade-off between customer security and friction

Historically, banks were challenged with finding a balance between offering customers rigorous security measures and offering them seamless, intuitive interface. Today, technology can be leveraged to offer customers state-of-the-art security without the cost of introducing friction or complexity which frustrates customers and increases the risk of onboarding drop-off, and transaction abandonment.

  • Meet the customer where they are and feel most comfortable

The modern-day customer is largely tech-savvy, mobile, and expects instant action and feedback. Processes and technologies need to cater for this, giving customers the ability to onboard, login, interact and transact remotely and digitally. In so doing, organisations need to ensure they don’t introduce unnecessary friction and must be cognisant of the challenges their customers face, for example, offering a large mobile application with high data consumption, and pushing regular application updates in areas of low connectivity and/or high data costs.

  • Have a truly single view of the customer

As already discussed, the digital customer is likely to engage their bank from a multitude of channels and change these from one interaction to the next. The customer sees their bank as one entity and expects to be treated the same by their bank. Whether the customer is engaging with the loans department, or credit card division, or customer service, data should be shared and easily accessible so as to ensure every customer engagement is part of a seamless conversation.

In summary, trust in banking is now implied and expected by the customer, and customer loyalty and CLV is being driven predominantly by delightful customer experience. We have often heard the adage that this is “the year of the customer” – but it is more relevant today than it ever has been before.

With our key strategic partnerships and cutting-edge AI technologies, Blue Turtle Technologies is able to offer a full end-to-end digital solution that will enable customers to engage and transact using virtual assistants, conversational AI, and process automation. We develop integrated solutions that include digital onboarding, chat banking, digital insurance claim processing and much more, using chat, natural language and hand-over to live agents when required.

We are also able to surface conversational AI over multiple channels, such as web, in-app, Facebook Messenger, and WhatsApp with our access to the WhatsApp Business API.

 

Conversational AI a reality with Digitall from Blue Turtle

Partnership brings conversational AI solutions to businesses looking to accelerate customer service and better automate client responses.

Issued by: Blue Turtle Technologies

Blue Turtle Technologies today announced it has been appointed as a strategic partner for Digitall.ai, a globally recognised vendor delivering all-in-one enterprise ready omnichannel conversational AI solutions, that allow customers to build intelligence-driven customer experiences without code. Another strategic partnership within the company’s digital transformation portfolio, the agreement enables Blue Turtle customers to engage and transact using virtual assistants, conversational AI, and process automation.

The Digitall.ai portfolio provides a customer with a toolkit that allows them to deliver chatbot functionality, drag and drop form builders, form-filling via natural language chat, document OCR, live-agent handover, and analytics. It also harnesses Natural language Intelligence (“NLI”) by way of a platform add-on that enables users to perform powerful queries on datasets, using natural language.

“Our clients need to provide solutions that cater for a mobile, resourceful, and demanding customer who want to be able to reach their service provider – no matter where the customer is, or what device they are using,” states Byron Wolff, Digital Product Manager at Blue Turtle. “Digitall.ai ensures that the responses that our clients provide are intuitive, relevant and purpose-driven, where they can create customer experiences using logical decision trees, enabled by AI, without having to rely on coders or developers to do it for them.”

Furthermore, Blue Turtle can offer packaged solutions that leverage Digitall.ai’s chatbot and conversation flow functionality and combine it with the WhatsApp Business API from its vendor partner Infobip. Creating an end-to-end digital conversational workflow.

Additional functionality within the Digitall.ai product stack, includes document upload, cognitive capture and OCR, as well as digital signatures and RPA for true solution versatility. Its live agent hand-over and chat management features provide a client the peace-of-mind that customers will always be serviced. Including in cases where interactions require human intervention, such as personal and sensitive conversations as well as specific cross-sell and up-sell opportunities. According to Wolff, the chatbot functionality within Digitall.ai allows a business to interact, transact and “converse” with customers anywhere, and at any time.

Some of the main use cases for Digitall.ai include:

  • Requesting product information, including FAQs, stock availability etc.
  • Requesting ATM, branch, store, or office locations
  • Customer remote onboarding
  • Form-filling via natural language, including e-signatures
  • Querying data sets using natural language
  • Requesting status updates on parcel deliveries
  • Scheduling meetings or consultations
  • Providing live agents, the ability to gather customer information and intents prior to engaging with them directly
  • A personal HR bot for employees to query policies, leave balances or even apply for leave
  • And so many more

“The decision to partner with Blue Turtle was an easy one, it is a well respected and established technology partner in Africa and its business model is closely aligned with our go to market strategy. Blue Turtle has identified Omni-Channel Conversational AI as a key technology to improve customer experience and reduce operational costs and the way that its teams have already started to position our solution to customers, should be used as a template for other partners who want to be successful in this industry. I am very confident that this partnership with be a profitable one and I look forward to doing great things with Blue Turtle,” says Bruce Skjolde, Sales Director at Digitall.ai.

Blue Turtle Technologies announced OPTIMISE, the third pillar of its Journey to the Cloud programme

Customers using the OPTIMISE service enjoy significant cost savings, resource and system optimisation while improving performance in their virtual and cloud environments.

Issued by: Blue Turtle Technologies

Blue Turtle Technologies today announced OPTIMISE, the third pillar of its Journey to the Cloud programme. This key component helps customers to drive the most value from their cloud deployments and ensures systems continue to perform optimally, whether they are on-premises or in the cloud.

Ideal for customers already making inroads into the cloud, the OPTIMISE service assists in solving performance issues and improving resource consumption. Making use of third-party optimisation tools, as well as tapping into the experience of the Blue Turtle technical services team, OPTIMISE delivers real and obvious cost-savings, performance and productivity gains.

“Post migration, optimisation is often overlooked, yet it delivers major benefits. By using leading-edge software, we can help IT deliver an exceptional user experience, and cut operating costs – two things that traditionally don’t fit well together,” states Avash Maharaj, Head of Infrastructure, Cloud and Security at Blue Turtle. “Whether it be virtual or IaaS performance, resource consumption or database services, we work across the IT ecosystem to ensure a client’s systems are functioning in the best possible way.”

The third pillar in Blue Turtle’s client-centric cloud migration programme, OPTIMISE follows on from ASSESS and MIGRATE, and provides the techniques a customer needs to turn a cloud deployment into an ongoing success. It tackles cost analysis, workload rightsizing, resource allocation, system consolidation and user experience, all key elements in ensuring that a multi or hybrid cloud deployment is a success.

The Blue Turtle Journey to the Cloud programme is developed around five key pillars, namely ASSESS, MIGRATE, OPTIMISE, SECURE and MANAGE. Each component is designed to address specific challenges customers face when mobilising to the cloud and supported by Blue Turtle’s management and technical team, underpinned by market-leading and proven software.

An OPTIMISE engagement service comprises a set of services that deliver benefits in specific areas, including:

Workload consolidation

Workload placement – IaaS, PaaS, virtual, container

Performance assurance

Container & VM density improvement

Dynamic resource allocation

Wasted resource identification

Consumption analysis

Cloud cost reduction

“By optimising a client’s virtual and cloud real estate, we give them insights into the validity of hosting workloads within different environments. Some companies backpedal out of the cloud because they just weren’t aware of how much it would cost them; cloud spend creep is a very real challenge. Our entire Journey to the Cloud programme has been designed so that our customers know what they are signing up for, that their service will run effectively, and that costs can be managed – without any nasty surprises,” ends Maharaj.

Join Blue Turtle at the Microsoft Ignite 2020 Conference at the Sandton Convention Centre between 30-31 January 2020, where it is a Gold Sponsor for the event. Its Cloud team will be on hand to guide you through its Journey to the Cloud programme and help you OPTIMISE your IT environment

Second pillar in Cloud Journey: MIGRATE moves Blue Turtle customers securely to the cloud

Following on from the company’s foundational pillar, ASSESS, this service takes charge of the safe and successful migration of a customer’s workloads and data to the public cloud.

Issued by: Blue Turtle Technologies

Blue Turtle Technologies has launched the second pillar of its Journey to the Cloud programme: MIGRATE. Following on from its foundational pillar, ASSESS, this service takes charge of the safe and successful migration of a customer’s workloads and data to the public cloud.

Taking the lead from insights gleaned from a detailed assessment of a client’s environment, the Blue Turtle team leverages its cloud competencies and migration software tools to actively place a customer’s assets in the cloud. From any source to any destination, the MIGRATE pillar is a comprehensive, secure and fast migration service, tailored to a customer’s specific objectives.

“The most daunting component of the cloud is taking the first step to migration. It is a ‘make or break’ moment for a client,” says Avash Maharaj, Head of Infrastructure, Cloud and Security at Blue Turtle.

“With the MIGRATE pillar of the Journey to the Cloud programme, we give customers the peace of mind that their workloads and data are moved into a cloud environment that has already been specified out, is secure, and is being done by way of a process that will have nominal to no impact on their business.”

Drawing from its extensive experience, the Blue Turtle team is able to ensure a successful migration of: IaaS to Azure, AWS or GCP; PaaS such as a database or data warehouse; or SaaS, including e-mail to O365, O365 Tenant-to-Tenant, or Sharepoint and OneDrive.

MIGRATE is a cloud migration programme that builds on analyses from the ASSESS pillar to manage migration execution, based on a detailed plan underpinned by advanced automation. The follow-on services are Optimise, Secure and Manage, each adding additional value to a customer’s cloud operations.

The full five pillars in the Blue Turtle Journey to the Cloud programme draw from the management, technical skills, managed services and software capabilities of the company, with the aim of not just facilitating a cloud transition for a customer, but also ensuring that it is successful, cost-effective and secure.

The MIGRATE pillar has been developed to help accelerate and enable workload and data migration, with these key capabilities:

  • ‘Any-to-Any’ workload migration;
  • In-flight Operating System upgrades;
  • Agentless software;
  • Advanced automation;
  • Minimal downtime and low-impact cut-over;
  • High-speed data movement;
  • Support for IaaS, PaaS and SaaS;
  • Application modernisation;
  • Security of systems and data; and
  • Operations and administration set-up.

MIGRATE services can be delivered as part of a customer-managed project, or as a fully managed service.

“When we migrate a customer to the cloud, we don’t just want to get a customer to the cloud; we want them to stay there because it is adding value to their business. To date, we have been successful in achieving just that, and with this programme we are now giving customers a ‘one-stop’ service to support their cloud goals, tailored to their specific environment, timelines and business objectives,” concludes Maharaj.

Join Blue Turtle as it unpacks its Journey to the Cloud programme and its complimentary Microsoft services at the Microsoft Ignite 2020 conference, which takes place from 30 to 31 January 2020 at the Sandton Convention Centre where it is a gold sponsor.

Blue Turtle introduces first pillar of excellence in innovative cloud journey: ASSESS

Cloud readiness assessment, accurate TCO analysis and cloud migration planning now possible when scaling to the cloud.

Issued by: Blue Turtle Technologies

Blue Turtle Technologies introduces ASSESS, the foundational pillar in its “Journey to the Cloud” solution offering. Designed to quantify and better plan a migration, and develop a successful cloud adoption strategy, customers can now navigate past inhibitors such as complexity, operational readiness and cost typically associated with cloud projects.

Leveraging its infrastructure and cloud expertise, together with the advanced analytics software it works with, Blue Turtle will use its ASSESS model to discover, inventory and map a customer’s IT environment, as well as analyse the full remit of IT assets in their environment. The information gathered helps it build out a cloud migration path that is both cost-effective and as nominally disruptive to operations as possible. The programme is particularly useful for customers looking to migrate workloads to public cloud providers.

“Cloud migration initiatives that don’t begin with a thorough assessment are destined for failure,” states Avash Maharaj, Head of Infrastructure, Cloud and Security at Blue Turtle. “Assessments should provide customers with an in-depth analysis to better plan their migration strategy. At Blue Turtle, the ASSESS pillar within our Journey to the Cloud programme delivers a comprehensive view of not only applications, but also their associated dependencies, migration readiness and compatibility checks, and the underlying infrastructure”

“Building on this, ASSESS delivers comprehensive information on cloud configuration and cost options, and detailed activity, risk, dependency and effort.

“Once complete, we then provide our customers with the facts needed to make their move to the cloud a successful one, that will deliver tangible business results,” he adds.

ASSESS is the first of five key pillars in Blue Turtle’s cloud migration programme, which also includes migrate, optimise, secure and manage. With its strong background in infrastructure, systems management and migration, Blue Turtle has the management capability, technical skills and software to develop a comprehensive cloud roadmap with customers.

The ASSESS pillar includes a range of services to help demystify complex IT environments and better plan a successful cloud migration roadmap; these services include:

  • Operational readiness assessment;
  • Infrastructure, software, database and application discovery;
  • Topology and service modelling and dependency mapping;
  • Resource use and optimisation plan – such as compute, memory, storage, network;
  • Application compatibility, readiness checks and code analysis;
  • Cloud platform and configuration – IaaS, PaaS analysis;
  • Cloud consumption, cost and TCO analysis.

“We are currently working with some of South Africa’s most innovative enterprises, enabling portability from on-premises environments to the cloud. Our detailed assessment phase also provides tailored recommendations based on a comprehensive analysis of the customer IT environment and cloud objectives. Our goal with our ‘Journey to the Cloud’ programme is to not just fulfil the role of technical expert, but also provide trusted business advice,” ends Maharaj.

Blue Turtle will be providing insight into its Journey to the Cloud programme as well as all of its Microsoft services at the Microsoft Ignite 2020 conference, where it is a Gold Sponsor of the event. Join the team at the Sandton Convention Centre on 30-31 January 2020.