Tuesday, 11 May 2021 12:34

Flight Centre soars into new cloud with oobe


Travel agent Flight Centre has selected Australian technology provider oobe to migrate its key Citrix platforms to Microsoft Azure, in a move expected to gain efficiencies, save costs, and future-proof the business.

ASX-listed Flight Centre operates over 550 stores in 10 countries, and despite the downturn in travel during the COVID-19 pandemic, Flight Centre has remained busy with over 2,000 concurrent Citrix users daily processing over one billion dollars of travel refunds and helping travellers manage their plans.

Flight Centre deploys several technologies enabling digital workspace services for its employees and business partners, with Citrix at the centre. Flight Centre has managed and maintained Citrix in-house, but is making the move away from a traditionally deployed and managed Citrix platform to the Citrix Cloud product suite on Microsoft Azure. The company expects its shift to the public cloud to provide it with a platform to cater for all of today’s use cases, as well as whatever comes next.

Australian technology provider, oobe, has been engaged to drive the migration. oobe has a proven 15-year history of delivering successful cloud and end-user solutions to some of Australia’s largest organisations.

oobe CEO, Stuart Kilduff said, “everything we do is about making life easier for our clients and their teams. Our philosophy is that things should work seamlessly, a team member should be able to lift the lid and get on with their job without thinking about how technology works behind the scenes.

“Like many organisations in the travel industry, the COVID-19 global pandemic has dramatically impacted Flight Centre. Flight Centre saw a need to look at all areas of its business, including its IT infrastructure. We were confident that the migration would drive further efficiencies and drastically improve the end-user experience. So confident, in fact, that we covered much of the cost of our personnel to conduct the proof of concept.

“Drawing on experience supporting 1000+ seat organisations in the government and corporate sectors, we knew that the migration from Flight Centre’s existing, yet traditional Citrix platform to Azure with Citrix Cloud would provide new features and functionality that will help to streamline and optimise future delivery and presentation methods through improved end-user experience and an evergreen control plane,” Mr Kilduff explained.

oobe commenced the process with a proof-of-concept identifying the efficiencies available to Flight Centre if it transitioned from its existing deployment to Azure. The first step in realising these efficiencies will be the design of Flight Centre’s Citrix Cloud platform in the Asia Pacific – South (AP-S) region and the development of an equivalent digital workspace solution in Azure. This will place one of Flight Centre’s largest workloads within Azure, supporting over 2,000 active users, and will become an enabler for future workloads.

oobe State Manager for Queensland, Jarred Foley said, “Flight Centre is one of the original clients we partnered with during 2016 when we launched our office in Brisbane. We have gone from helping them with initial tactical solutions to more strategic solution development and delivery, and have been supporting them in the EUC and Citrix space for close to five years. oobe has a great team that supports Flight Centre, and we stuck by them at the height of the pandemic in 2020, helping drive efficiency and cost savings in order to reach their targets even prior to this initiative.

“When people said it couldn’t be done, we helped Flight Centre transform applications that were never meant to run in the public cloud. This next evolution of their digital workspace platform will be the culmination of those years of hard work and will be a primary enabler for Flight Centre to attain value and efficiency from its transition to Microsoft 365 and Citrix Cloud.”

Image credit: "Plane clouds" by khawkins04 is licensed under CC BY 2.0

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David M Williams

David has been computing since 1984 where he instantly gravitated to the family Commodore 64. He completed a Bachelor of Computer Science degree from 1990 to 1992, commencing full-time employment as a systems analyst at the end of that year. David subsequently worked as a UNIX Systems Manager, Asia-Pacific technical specialist for an international software company, Business Analyst, IT Manager, and other roles. David has been the Chief Information Officer for national public companies since 2007, delivering IT knowledge and business acumen, seeking to transform the industries within which he works. David is also involved in the user group community, the Australian Computer Society technical advisory boards, and education.

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