STCS PROVIDES CLOUD SERVICES TO SUPPORT
MINISTRY OF HOUSING'S COMMITMENT TO
Ministry of Housingwww.housing.sa
Services and Solutions provided
Hosted cloud services
While the Ministry of Housing for Saudi Arabia continues its ambitious program of new house building, in line with the aspirations of Vision 2030, it seeks more effective ways of interacting with citizens and partners across the Kingdom. Its primary goal is to increase housing ownership from 47% to 52% as stipulated with the Vision.
As with all KSA Government departments, the MOH serves a population of more than 32 million, of which more than 20 million are internet users, representing 64.7% of the population . It is reasonable for these users to expect easy and fast access to information from government departments. This is in the nature of a rapidly evolving digital society.
The Ministry of Housing faces constant pressure to respond faster to the needs of a growing nation. This requirement applies not just to its dynamic new build program across the Kingdom, but also to the ongoing provision of relevant information and numerous application procedures that directly concern citizens.
Interacting through government websites invariably raises issues around data security in a world where cyber-attacks are becoming an everyday occurrence for organizations of every type. The sheer volume of site visit requires robust network support. Most importantly the MOH needed to be able to improve its services and launch new ones regularly and rapidly. It required dynamic capabilities.
The Ministry asked STCS for guidance on the best way to future-proof its online presence. It required a business case assessing the relative merits of an on premise solution (its own data center) or a move to the cloud.
All digital transformation initiatives within the public sector must have a firmly developed cost framework. Which enables the government to ‘do more with less’ given the strict budget parameters within which all government departments are required to achieve their objectives. To create a rational comparison between the two options STCS undertook an evaluative study focussing on Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).
Although the Ministry had previously based its infrastructure on its own server environment, STCS demonstrated the shortcomings of the approach in terms of continuous improvement into the future. With an owned solution the Ministry would incur significant upfront investment costs for changes and would be restricted in future agility.
STCS demonstrated how one of the biggest gains for the Ministry, in moving its services to the cloud, would speed up provisioning new services or launching new applications. Such a process would take many months if undertaken with the Ministry’s own IT set-up. An irresistible comparison showed that the same results could be achieved in minutes or seconds with cloud: a simple click of the mouse. There is now no barrier between ideas and their realization. Innovation is a daily possibility.
An additional compelling consideration involved the three to five-year commitment that would have to be made each time a new hardware was purchased. Such up-front investment is irrelevant when an organization migrates its computing to the cloud. Preparing for the future is about having the freedom and support to improve, not about being locked in to physical equipment and its associated strain on costs.
As a result of the comparative cost/benefit analysis the MOH selected the STCS proposal based on hosting the Ministry’s website in the cloud through STC’s data center network, comprising five data centres across the Kingdom, each offering multiple layers of security, power, and support.
STCS now provides a hosted cloud service enabling the Ministry to focus on the future without being hampered by slow computing equipment. The cloud has brought benefits of scalability for seasonal demand peaks, reduced costs and greater agility. Furthermore, all data resides in the Kingdom, protected by the constant monitoring from the STCS team, in accordance with global security standards.
STCS is committed to continuous improvement for our customers and embracing the future now. A wholly-owned subsidiary of the STC Group, we are the leading ICT services and solutions provider in KSA with over 800 employees serving customers from 35 cities within the Kingdom.
We share a future vision with our customers – where the needs of society, the enhancement of education, the attainment of better citizen and customer outcomes, safer, securer and smarter environments are not just a long term aspiration; they are achievable now. For STCS achievement thrives on finding better ways of doing things for our customers. This is the true spirit of innovation.