Woods Bagot: Making virtual design collaboration easy and scalable with a global, agile network

Telstra’s Global Managed SD-WAN solution offers global visibility and control to continuously optimise network performance

April 6, 2020

3 min read

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Challenge

Woods Bagot is a global architectural firm. With over 1,000 people working across 17 major cities in Australia, Asia, Europe, Middle East and North America, they use a global studio model with teams collaborating across borders and leverage technology to share design intelligence.

Facing increasing demand for its award-winning services and in response to business growth, Woods Bagot wanted to explore how they could further diversify their networks to increase resilience, optimise network routing for more cost efficiency, and enable greater agility when setting up or turning off site connections.

Not having a large in-house IT and network team meant Woods Bagot required a partner who could provide ongoing management, support, and service resolution for their network. In 2018, Telstra became that partner.

In 2020, at the outbreak of the global coronavirus pandemic, Woods Bagot’s global managed SD WAN network was the backbone to the firm’s swift response, allowing the business to continue operating without interruption.

Key issues

  • Growing global bandwidth demand placed on the network
  • Fast business growth with the need to quickly provision or turn off sites
  • Small internal IT team required ongoing support to continuously derive optimum value from their network
  • Enabling the global workforce of up to 1000 people to work remotely without compromising the quality of services

Solution

Telstra listened to Woods Bagot’s need for a connectivity solution and through a collaborative workshop process, Telstra gained further insight into the challenges Woods Bagot was facing – and an understanding of the drivers to be agile, global and responsive to the business needs.

Telstra designed and implemented a Global Managed SD-WAN (Cisco Meraki MX SD-WAN) and Managed Wi-Fi solution, with hybrid WAN access via Telstra’s Global Internet Direct and Global IPVPN. The managed solution provides Woods Bagot with a single point of contact for its network, proactive monitoring and alarming of devices and network visibility through best-in-class portals.

The internal IT team can work collaboratively with Telstra to optimise application performance and intervene at a degraded site before the link goes down. Telstra’s Managed Network Operation Centre manages multiple layers of complexity in the SD-WAN technology, minimising risk to the business through faster resolution times. The robustness of the solution allowed the firm to continue the collaboration essential to innovative design, when COVID-19 kept everyone at home.

As part of the process we:

  • Delivered on the need for global visibility and control to continuously optimise network performance, deploying a Global Managed SD-WAN solution with hybrid WAN access offering greater network agility
  • Encrypted the network for intrusion prevention as added security
  • Set the desired threat protection level built in a single system

Outcome

“The deployment through Telstra has been seamless. Now, I can easily log into the Meraki dashboard to see my network and quickly pinpoint any issues. If there’s an issue, I know there’s a dedicated number to call within Telstra and they’ll handle the incident to resolution. This takes the strain off my IT team to manage the network so they can focus on other strategic projects. The end user experience has increased dramatically … it just works,” said Tom Leyden, Global Leader of IT at Woods Bagot.

The Telstra Global Managed SD-WAN solution helps Woods Bagot derive all the benefits of a diverse, secure and agile network so its teams can collaborate efficiently around the world.

Lessons learnt along the way

The success of the technology solution and the collaboration between Telstra and Woods Bagot has enabled:

  • A trusted, proactive partnership with a single point of accountability with visibility of network performance to proactively help Woods Bagot optimise usage whilst offering quick, dependable support.
  • Optimal end user experience with the ability to prioritise business-critical applications and application-aware routing let Woods Bagot’s global teams collaborate on a high performing network seamlessly.
  • Scalability to support Woods Bagot’s international growth with sustained cost efficiency by leveraging diversified connectivity options and having the agility to switch sites on and off quickly.