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Jakob Müller Group: Business IT without infrastructure ballast

From bra straps, zips and Velcro fasteners to safety and heavy-duty belts: almost everyone in the world has come into contact with products created by Jakob Müller technology. Since 1887, the proud Swiss company with headquarters in Frick has been developing and producing technology solutions for the ribbon and narrow fabric industry. More important than ever is the quality of the IT for the 11 locations on four continents with 1,000 employees and an immense number of applications. To be able to concentrate on the core tasks, Jakob Müller uses Managed Services from ITpoint.

Focus, costs and redundancy as main drivers for outsourcing

Anyone who wants to remain at the top of the world as a supplier to the textile industry after more than 130 years must deliver high quality at market-driven prices. This also applies to IT.

Our aim is to provide high-quality IT services with a lean organization. And that means services that optimally support our business and our processes.

Michael Stöckli, CIO Jakob Müller AG

Not quite as simple, with 100 applications and 630 IT users. Above all because at some Jakob Müller locations the sun always shines when it’s dark in Switzerland. Ballast had to be removed and a partial outsourcing of the IT infrastructure was considered. Four points in particular spoke in favour of this:

  • less distraction: the realization that infrastructure distracts from the really important tasks of Müller IT.
  • lower operating costs: The assumption that external managed services and cloud specialists could provide Jakob Müller’s infrastructure requirements at lower prices.
  • eliminate investment costs: A renewal of the ERP platform was pending and would have meant an investment of several hundred thousand francs.
  • ensure geo-redundancy: The Möhlin site – at that time the secondary location of Müller’s IT – was to be replaced.
Machine for labels MÜGRIP® MBJ8
Enables the production of labels, images and technical narrow fabrics with cut edges. The machine is equipped with a number of new and innovative features, making it the most efficient on the market.

Decision for cloud-based infrastructure as a service

In an intensive evaluation phase, Jakob Müller examined the concepts of various service providers – and finally decided on a partnership with ITpoint. CIO Stöckli comments: “In addition to the competitive prices, we liked ITpoint’s managed services model because, although it is based on standards, it is flexible enough to meet our sometimes special requirements. In fact, ITpoint’s service model provides infrastructure, software and operational services according to ISO 20000 standards, but is extremely modular and even leaves the customer the freedom to choose the cloud model (private, hybrid, shared). The cooperation between Jakob Müller and ITpoint developed over two phases after the decision was made:

  • Phase 1: Provision of ERP platform
    Instead of the upcoming renewal of the ERP infrastructure, the ERP system “oxaion” was migrated to the shared cloud environment of ITpoint. Since then, ITpoint has taken over the entire operation up to and including the operating system.
  • Phase 2: Provision of complete core infrastructure
    All other central applications were migrated to the ITpoint cloud. Thanks to geo-redundant data storage using NetApp replication mechanisms, Jakob Müller was able to eliminate the Möhlin site.

And how did the migration go? “If we hadn’t informed our users that they were now accessing the ITpoint cloud, they wouldn’t have known anything about it. Everything went completely smoothly,” says Michael Stöckli.

Jakob-Müller’s overall responsibility for IT infrastructure is now limited to smaller installations in the branch offices, the company network, applications and user support. ITpoint provides the core infrastructure as a managed service from the data center:

  • Locations & Network: Infrastructure as a Service from highly secure Tier IV data centers with 80 km of geo-redundancy in between. Core network with redundant connection from Jakob Müller via 1-Gbit point-to-point connections.
  • Server platform: x86 and IBM POWER with VMware and PowerVM as hypervisors.
  • NetApp Storage & DR: Storage of all data on high-performance flash systems from NetApp. Permanent, block-based replication and backup of all data via NetApp SnapMirror/SnapVault. This technology enables easy switching of “business services” from the primary to the secondary data center in a short time.
  • Operation: Service Operation Package with Service Desk, Support, Monitoring, Service Management and Basic Operation.

Jakob Müller thus obtains a large part of the data center infrastructure as a service from the completely redundant cloud environment of ITpoint. All systems are permanently monitored. ITpoint’s service desk is available to Jakob Müller IT around the clock.

High-performance ribbon loom NFM® 53 4/66
Designed for the production of light to medium weight elastic or non-elastic tapes. The “M” in NFM stands for “modular” and guarantees the customer simple conversion and expansion possibilities, higher efficiency and higher productivity.

The main benefit for Jakob Müller lies in the “Business-IT”

At Jakob Müller, a lean IT team of 14 people now operates out of Switzerland into the world and can largely concentrate on what CIO Michael Stöckli sees as the core tasks: “With its managed services model, ITpoint enables us to focus on support and consulting for users, software and processes. This is where we can add real value with our knowledge of Jakob Müller processes. Operating the basic data center infrastructure would only distract us from this and unnecessarily inflate the IT organization”.

So the main benefit of the partnership for Jakob Müller is the focus on business. In addition, the cooperation has made it possible to flatten upcoming investments in infrastructure. Today, Jakob Müller purchases IT infrastructure and operations in the right dose at a moderate, predictable monthly price. Furthermore, the outsourcing also eliminated the headache that the closure of the Möhlin site had caused the Jakob Müller IT team.

Overall, CIO Stöckli draws a positive balance: “The decision to choose ITpoint as our IT partner was absolutely right. We can rely on ITpoint and especially appreciate the cooperation on a partnership level. Together with our colleagues at ITpoint, we always find a solution that is tailored to our requirements”.

Advantages for Jakob Müller

  • Secure and highly available IT infrastructure
  • Personal support including service desk and support around the clock
  • Geo-redundancy without own data centers
  • Moderate, predictable monthly costs
  • No development and maintenance of infrastructure knowledge
  • Focus on core task “Business-IT”

About Jakob Müller

More than 1,000 employees on four continents work for the company worldwide. The network of representatives covers 60 countries. Müller products stand for performance, quality and safety. The commitment to the greatest possible customer benefit is reflected in perfect service – from technical support and individual training to prompt spare parts service. With its product portfolio Jakob Müller AG covers all needs of the tape and narrow text industry. From warping the yarn to the finished fabric, knitted fabric or textile labels, everything from one source.

  • 1’000 employees
  • 630 IT users
  • 11 locations
  • 82 Markets
  • 133 years of experience

Would you like to learn more?

Contact me now for an exchange. I look forward to meeting you!

Ronald Veidt

Ronald Veidt, Senior Account Manager