By

  • Category:
    Other
  • Document type:
    Article
  • Level:
    High School
  • Page:
    5
  • Words:
    3030

9Business Requirements Document

Cloud technologies as a means of providing the necessary infrastructure, rapid and efficient support to uninterrupted provision of services nationwide.

DECLARATION

Declaration by the student

This Business Requirements Document is my original work and has never been presented to any other business setting before. No part of this research should be reproduced without my consent or that of my institution.

Name: ************************ Sign: ………………………. Date: ……………………..

Declaration by the Supervisor

This project has been submitted for defence with my Approval as the (your institution) supervisor.

Name: ******************************* Sign: …………………………Date: …………

Table of Contents

Executive Summary 4

Introduction 5

Company Description (core business) 6

Problem Definition 6

Business Need 6

Current Organisation Position 6

Staff Environment 6

Business Objectives 9

Available Resources 10

Constraints 10

List of Assumptions 10

Training 11

Specific Requirements including 11

Functional Requirements 11

Non Functional Requirements 12

Conclusion 12

Glossary 13

15Bibliography

Executive Summary

Cloud computing is a marketing gimmick which has offered powerful set of technologies that are based on Infrastructure as a service (IaaS), Platform as a service (PaaS) and Software as a service (SaaS) to deliver a genuine business advantage. This concept is useful for a company that is wishing to expand and have a competitive edge over other businesses operating in the same field. It guarantees innovation, better service delivery to customers and efficiency only if the necessary on-site IT infrastructure has been laid. A cloud can be defined as a computing infrastructure that is based on a remote data centre and can be accessed via the Internet or the Wide Area Network. An organization can own the cloud, it can be managed by a third party or can even be contracted on an annuity revenue model or over a short period of time. IaaS provides flexibility on network bandwidth, CPU capacity, data storage and the basic operating system. The owner of the cloud is able to resize the underlying Cloud Infrastructure based on demand.

Introduction

Cloud computing technologies will enable a company to focus on the core services to their customers and shift from the devotion of their efforts and time in managing their IT. It is widely acknowledged that IT operations and assets are evolving continuously and organizations are afraid of making loses from the disruptions caused by the existing It infrastructure. The internet, collaboration and mass media have opened channels for enabling organizations to expand and grow which were constrained by performance and geography constrictions. Cloud computing technologies provide a new paradigm for business resources by enabling companies to use and create IT and services to maximize the way they serve customers on-demand basis as well as effectiveness of they offer the same. Business processes in a company are supported by applications which are managing information that the company holds as well as performing transactions. There is a platform or infrastructure that offers the storage for services, communications and processes (Loaiza., 2015 p.15). Cloud computing technologies will enable a company like SWI being an insurance company to create and use services on-demand as the applications, infrastructure and platforms are replaced by cloud services.

Company Description (core business)

South Western Insurance (SWI) Pty Ltd is a company that provides insurance services to host of services to various clients throughout the South West region of Sydney. It is a very large business in Liverpool that occupies 15 story located on Moore St. It is a building housing 1100 staff with 11 of them being IT personnel. The business provides a wide range of insurance services for businesses, homes, car insurance as well as professional indemnity right. The productivity in the mining sector in WA has increased and hence SWI has created more interest in the industry. This has seen the company deciding to open an office in Broome to maximise on the mining boom. It is privately owned and provides insurance services like brokerage, to ensure that their customers have their assets fully covered. It aims at simplifying and streamlining the insurance process in a friendly manner that saves money and time. They provide expert advice on all the insurance needs that a client deserves.

Problem Definition

Business Need

Due to the booming productivity in the mining sector, SWI is interested to venture into the business and is seeking to offer a good, affordable and secure communication between the head office in Liverpool and the other newly office that us proposed to be constructed. The company as stated earlier has 1100 staffs 11 of them being from IT. This staff is crowded and needs to be reallocated to the other main office. In that way, the expenses incurred from paying such employees is minimized as they are being deployed to increase productivity in another area. It is looking to establish and maintain a secure shared environment between the two offices, with the main server being located in Liverpool office.

Current Organisation Position

Staff Environment

Staff at SWI corporate sector consists of the following:

• Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

• Chief Information Officer (CIO)

• IT Manager

• Server Operations Manager

• Web Server Administrator (1)

• Email Server Administrator (1)

• Network Operations Manager

• Network Operations Assistant (1)

• Helpdesk Manager

• Helpdesk Assistant IT (3)

• Web Developer (1)

The reason for the project is to come up with a strategy to expand nationally. With the possible future direction of the organisation, the company has been seriously considering cloud technologies as a means of providing the necessary infrastructure, rapidly and efficiently to support uninterrupted services nationwide. However, there is no efficient means of communication between the new building and the main office. The company needs flexibility and scalability in opening a new office. The managing and maintenance costs are high. The refreshment of the software, servers and desktops on a yearly basis increases costs. The company needs to adopt cloud computing technologies to shift from capex (capital expenditure) to OpeX (operational expenditure). The existing IT staff will act as the interface between the business and the technology without concern of the underlying infrastructure.

a. List of Stakeholders and their roles

SWI are authorised representatives of Winley Insurance Group Pty Ltd. These are formal active stakeholders who try to effect its operations through various measures like financing when deemed necessary. The company’s corporate sustainability is enhanced by the stakeholders. Tax payers, employees as well as the society can be influential to the operations of the company. The society is concerned with the CO2 emitted by IT systems. The owners and the managers of the company are internal stakeholders who ensure smooth flow of functions through implementation of decisions. Banks are stakeholders providing the company with managerial, technical and marketing information. It relies with relevant authorities to offer public services and act on legislation. The media channels any information that other stakeholders need to know about the company.

Scope

SWI plans to continue to provide quality insurance services whilst growing the business into various regions. SWI wishes to extend its quality services into the home sector of the insurance marketplace. The plans entail opening a new office in Broome WA, developing online helpdesk solution as well as a remote assistance facility that services localities, implementing Internet access as well as WIFI in all locations, automating deployment/upgrading of desktop environment, implementing sustainable/Green IT practises, upgrading existing desktop, networking and server environment and rationalizing the use of existing servers via the use of virtualisation (decrease from 30 to approximately 7 servers).

The existing IT staff will act as the interface between the business and the technology without concern of the underlying infrastructure. There will be a need to employ a database administrator though to coordinate the storage for data, services, communications and processes. Cloud computing technologies will enable the company like SWI being an insurance company to create and use services on-demand as the applications, infrastructure and platforms are replaced by cloud services.

Business Objectives

  1. Improved agility

The company needs to accommodate as many new customers as possible and cater for any unpredictable fluctuations after swallowing the high costs of the underlying software and paying for the software licenses. It wants to align its resources in a position that can be monitored closely and in case of changes to the business environment, it offers the flexibility to cater for future requirements (ISACA, 2011 p.78).

  1. Operational resilience

The company wants a state-of-the heart managed backup and firewalls, fully redundant hardware and services mirrored across the two offices, 24/7 real-time monitoring to avoid data lose and interruption of operations (ISACA, 2011 p.122).

  1. Operational efficiency

The IT staff monitors the contracts and the Service Level Agreements (SLAs) from where the systems were outsourced but they need to relinquish these roles to only manage the cloud service but not the heterogeneous hardware and software infrastructure. The managing and maintenance costs are met by the cloud service provider. The cloud service eliminates the need to refresh software, servers and desktops on a yearly basis. This shifts CapEx into OpEx (ISACA, 2011 p.156).

  1. Sustainable IT

The carbon footprint is of major concern relative to the rules and regulations concerning the environmental pollution. IT systems consume energy in the real estate setting significantly affecting their availability as well as the costs involved. The company profile is greatly boosted from the reduction of the carbon print associated with related power and cooling of the hardware in IT systems. Adopting Cloud computing technologies ensures that SWI complies with Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) that affects the top thousand companies or so (ISACA, 2011 p.189).

Available Resources

SWI occupies a 15 storey building in the Liverpool region with approximately 1100 staff with approximately 73 per floor with varying memories. Each staff member has their own computer. These PCs have Windows XP sp2, with MS Office 2003 Professional on each and are networked by a CAT 3 (10Mb) base network. There are two servers on each floor which operate on MS Server 2000. The servers are running MS Server 2000 with a range of insurance based applications. No wireless connectivity available. Internet connectivity is via ADSL 1 (4.5Mbs). The servers are backed up once a week in a tape stored inside. The online website is for information only and does not allow online transactions or quotes

Constraints

The project comes after swallowing the high costs of the underlying software and paying for the software licenses. The company should use Xen-based hypervisor to keep costs low. It might take up dome time to have access to the cloud services because of the same time it takes to install servers, setting up the other devices as well as configurations. But once that is done, only hours or minutes to enjoy faster access of the service. The carbon footprint is of major concern relative to the rules and regulations concerning the environmental pollution. The company has to comply with Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) that affects the top thousand companies or so. The proposed system is subject to abide to the 1998 Data Protection Act that protects personal information about clients from third parties and the cloud provider should not be in a position to view the client’s personal information.

List of Assumptions

The cloud service provider assumes that the relevant IT personnel like database and network administrator are available for training on setting up and configuration of the cloud network. The transactions on the data provided by the company (SWI) is assumed to be correct and final and the provider can enter the offices of the company anytime to get clarifications on the data to be processed or getting things into order in case there are technical itches. The company is assumed to have installed servers and the cabling to have been laid before the cloud service provider intervenes. The existing staff members need to be computer literate and be understanding the concepts of cloud computing and networking as a whole. In case the company has some extra IT staff necessary to be hired, they must be willing to do so before the cloud service provider commences its operations. In case the production rate increases, the company should hire additional staff if required to operate/manage new systems e.g. hiring of additional staff to handle increased volume of transactions or hiring of website administrator to manage a new website. SWI should be willing to increase production to keep up with increase in demand

Training

As most projects produce a new product and/or service, inevitably some form of training maybe required. The cloud service provider offers training manuals on how it provides services and how the infrastructure has to be laid. The training takes a month to ensure each staff is well informed on his/her roles. The staff to be trained is the available IT staff of the company on how to configure the servers and the entire network. A cloud provider trains the IT staff on state-of-the heart managed backup and firewalls, fully redundant hardware and services mirrored across the two offices, 24/7 real-time monitoring and all these ensure that data lose does not interrupt operations. Hence, the cloud computing technique promises the largest economies of scale for an expanding company like SWI at mid-market pricing. The company meets the costs of training for its staff.

Specific Requirements including

Functional Requirements

The cloud service technologies will enable the company to provide a wide range of insurance services for businesses, homes, car insurance as well as professional indemnity right. The new system will provide a unified set of reports, definition and terms. There is a single unified source of information. The servers run a variety of insurance based applications. These applications allow staff to provide insurance quotes and assess claims. The servers will store information about insurance quotes and assess claims and make them accessible from both the offices. The reports that the system will handle range from general broking, claims to premium funding.

Non Functional Requirements

Non-functional requirements describe how the proposed system will perform rather that what it will do. The servers and the desktops will have not to be refreshed on a yearly basis as the cloud service provider will be responsible for that. The technical staff, hardware and software requirements lessen and makes SWI stand in a position to outcompete large companies with more staff and underlying resources. The system offers state-of-the heart managed backup and firewalls, fully redundant hardware and services mirrored across the two offices, 24/7 real-time monitoring and all these ensure that data lose does not interrupt operations. The speed of processing transactions is fast compared to the traditional networked system. The total capacity of the records stored by the new system will be large and not limited to space with a very fast retrieval time on real time basis. The time it will take for a client to have served will be shorter compared to the same time it could have taken to with the existing system. More products are produced compared to the same amount of time that was produced by the existing system.

Conclusion

Cloud computing technologies provide a new paradigm for business resources by enabling companies to use and create IT and services to maximize the way they serve customers on-demand basis as well as effectiveness of they offer the same. Business processes in a company are supported by applications which are managing information that the company holds as well as performing transactions. Cloud computing is more lucrative option in the economic landscape of SWI as it promises both longer-term strategic benefits and ROI. The operational costs are minimized, flexibility and scalability is high. SWI adopting cloud computing technologies will shift from capex (capital expenditure) to OpeX (operational expenditure). The existing IT staff will act as the interface between the business and the technology without concern of the underlying infrastructure. Cloud computing is enabled by virtualization and the creation of virtualized servers is a way of inviting the concept of cloud computing. Cloud computing will balance the equations for SWI. Accessing less technical staff, less hardware and software requirements and makes SWI stand in a position to outcompete large companies with more staff and underlying resources. Cloud services cannot be witnessed without a network. Adopting cloud means optimizing network through increasing bandwidth as well as acquaintance of Quality-of-Service. The IT team available in the company has expertise in IT security and networking and in case of a problem, it is easy to trace its root cause. The company should seek for a cloud provider who is experienced in networking and hosting for a strong Service Level Agreement. This will also provide assurances of good performance, lower operational costs and offer an added to the expansion policy. 

Glossary

A cloud can be defined as a computing infrastructure that is based on a remote data centre and can be accessed via the Internet or the Wide Area Network

CapEx (Capital Expenditure)

The capital that is used to cater for the maintenance of the existing infrastructure in a company

OpEx (Operational Expenditure)

The capital that is used to cater for the daily operations of a company.

Virtualization

The abstraction between software and hardware

ROI (Return On Investment)

These are the profits that are yielded from venturing on an investment.

Bibliography

Loaiza. C. (2015). Analysis of Applications and Success Factors of Cloud Computing for Small- and Medium-sized Businesses. Hamburg: Anchor Academic Publishing (aap_verlag) — Computers — 88 pages.

Martin Gilje Jaatun (2009). Cloud Computing: First International Conference, CloudCom 2009, Beijing, China, December 1-4, 2009, Proceedings. Berlin: Springer Science & Business Media, 24 Nov 2009 — Computers — 707 pages.

Srinivasan, S. (2014). Security, Trust, and Regulatory Aspects of Cloud Computing in Business Environments. IGI Global, 31 Mar 2014 — Computers — 325 pages.

Isaca, Information Systems Audit and Control Association (2011). IT Control Objectives for Cloud Computing: Controls and Assurance in the Cloud. ISACA — Cloud computing — 192 pages.

Peter J. Strauss, J.D., LL.M. (2011). The Definitive Guide to Captive Insurance Companies: What Every Small Business Owner Needs to Know About Creating and Implementing a Captive. Bloomington: Author House, 6 Oct 2011 — Business & Economics — 164 pages.

Zaigham Mahmood (2013). Cloud Computing: Methods and Practical Approaches. Berlin: Springer Science & Business Media — Computers — 347 pages