Customers

PBS Building Cements Success with Nutanix

Nutanix Enterprise Cloud increases the certainty that a growing construction company can plan and execute multi-million dollar projects with precision

INDUSTRY

Construction 

BENEFITS

  • Reduces business risk for construction projects with stable access to applications helping ensure projects stay on track
  • Enables major desktop upgrade to Windows 10 without disruption to the business
  • 60% IT utilization frees up resources to focus on key strategic business initiatives

SOLUTIONS

  • Nutanix AOS
  • Nutanix Prism
  • Nutanix Pulse

APPLICATIONS

  • SAGE 300 enterprise resource planning (ERP)
  • Windows 10
  • Computer aided design (CAD) software

BUSINESS BENEFIT

PBS Building employs the best in the construction business and now they have an IT infrastructure to support that talent as they deliver multi-million dollar projects across Australia. Whether in the office or onsite, personnel have reliable access to the applications they need to manage even the largest building programs, and the company has the IT capacity to continue pursuing digital transformation.

 

We need employees to access the data that allows them to interact with potentially 100s of people onsite every working day to execute the projects we plan so carefully. With Nutanix, we are delivering on our business imperatives and delivering more value to our customers.

– Matthew Rayment, Chief Operating Officer at PBS Building

CHALLENGE

PBS Building is a recognized leader in project management and design as well as residential, commercial and industrial construction. Company turnover is around $250 million a year, with construction projects worth anything from $500,000 to $50 million. Construction companies worldwide such as PBS Building take the major financial risk when building work begins, which means planning and execution must be spot on. Matthew Rayment, Chief Operating Officer at PBS Building says, “There is no room for error in this business. When a construction job is in full-swing we could have 30-40 different trades onsite and hundreds of people working. There could be 10-12 active work phases—and it all has to be managed carefully for us to stay on time and budget.”

PBS Building employees access the applications they need across a virtual desktop environment. The problem was the legacy infrastructure that supported the desktops as well as the company’s SAGE 300 enterprise resource planning (ERP) system was no longer fit for purpose. “Downtime was definitely an issue we needed to fix,” says Rayment. “We’d come into work thinking, are we going to be okay today. Plus, we had this question in our minds, whether we had the IT resources to support new projects.” The balloon went up when PBS Building tried to upgrade from Windows 8 to Windows 10. “It all went wrong and we had to roll back to Windows 8 for a time,” says Rayment. “We knew the situation couldn’t continue as it was.”

SOLUTION

PBS Building hired IT systems provider Qirx to help them get to the heart of the problems with the Windows 10 migration and the broader IT issues. The results were conclusive, with Qirx advising PBS Building to modernize their IT stack, proposing a hyperconverged solution from Nutanix. “Although we looked at running our IT from the public cloud instead of on-premises,” says Rayment, “Nutanix gave us the best solution to keep control of our physical hardware and our virtual desktops.”

Qirx implemented the Nutanix Enterprise Cloud for PBS Building in Qirx’s hosted data center. The infrastructure, which Qirx manages, consists of a five-node Nutanix NX-3175-G5 cluster with the Nutanix Acropolis Operating System (AOS) delivering compute, storage and network virtualization as well as data protection. Prism also provides single-pane management and includes Nutanix Pulse for alerting services. The infrastructure runs SAGE 300 ERP as well as supporting the virtual desktop environment, providing the 150 employees with a blend of Windows 10 and processor-intensive computer aided design applications.

CUSTOMER OUTCOME

The biggest impact from Nutanix has been reducing the risk PBS Building assumes with each construction project. That’s because the infrastructure ensures PBS Building employees have reliable access to the applications that help them avoid costly project overruns. “There’s simply no downtime with Nutanix solution,” says Rayment. “We come to work, not worrying that our IT could fail. We never had a server go down since we moved to Nutanix, and that stability means both our planning and execution can be first class.” 

PBS Building is in a growth phase, winning new projects and hiring more personnel. “We can bring in projects, add people to our staff and deliver upgrades to our software stack without worrying about IT capacity,” says Rayment, who is thankful the company completed the Windows 10 migration without further problems and won’t have to repeat the Windows 8 rollback scenario ever again. “With Nutanix, our IT is never more than 60 percent utilized—when before we were virtually sitting at 90 percent the whole time. For me personally, that’s a big win and gives me peace of mind because it means PBS Building is in the right place to embrace digitization as it happens across our industry.”

NEXT STEPS 

PBS Building is talking with Qirx about adding another node to the existing Nutanix cluster. “We’re capacity planning and looking heavily at our application stack to make sure we’re delivering as well as we can,” says Rayment. “We’ve recently transferred to Veeam to protect data on our Nutanix Enterprise Cloud.”