City of Charles Sturt

The City of Charles Sturt Transforms Public Service Delivery for its Community using the AWS Cloud

2021

The City of Charles Sturt (CCS) is a council in Adelaide, South Australia, that serves and represents the interests of 120,000 constituents. CCS delivers a diverse range of public services, from public health and safety to providing amenities such as community centers, libraries, and recycling facilities.

Previously, data from these services were stored in disparate systems owned by different departments, which made cross-team collaboration challenging. CCS had also hosted its data in on-premises data centers for over 25 years, but sought an alternative solution due to end-of-life hardware and a desire to move to a sustainable and future-ready architecture.

The council saw this as an opportunity to give its IT team the agility to develop and deploy new application features more quickly. This would allow them to build a more comprehensive, coordinated, and integrated experience to keep up with its constituents’ evolving demands.

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The cloud architecture empowers us to focus on value-add, customer-focused services. We’re more confident in our ability to scale our infrastructure and support a culture of risk-taking and innovation, and AWS’s broad range of solutions gives us the flexibility to explore better service capabilities in the future.”

Karin Swiatnik
Manager of Information Services, City of Charles Sturt

Migrating with Confidence

Following a tender in October 2019, CCS selected Comunet, an AWS Advanced Consulting Partner, to help develop an integrated platform for better public service delivery, starting with migrating its legacy IT architecture to the AWS Cloud.

Comunet led the onboarding process with a series of workshops that introduced the council to the benefits of the AWS Cloud. CCS learned how to guide the migration process with the AGILE methodology, efficiently managing multiple services running in parallel.

The migration was rolled out in phases to minimize risk and speed up time to production. Testing began in January 2020, and the migration was completed within 4 months by June 2020, despite pandemic-related disruptions and remote working arrangements.

Cutting Server Provisioning from Weeks to Hours

After moving to the AWS Cloud, CCS gained greater speed and agility, reducing the time required to provision servers from 4 weeks to 8 hours.

Karin Swiatnik, manager of information services at CCS, shared: “The cloud architecture empowers us to focus on value-add, customer-focused services. We’re more confident in our ability to scale our infrastructure and support a culture of risk-taking and innovation, and AWS’s broad range of solutions gives us the flexibility to explore better service capabilities in the future.”

CCS is the first South Australian council to successfully migrate its on-premises data center to AWS. In recognition of its efforts to further regional IT development, CCS received the 2020 Excellence in IT Service Delivery Award from Local Government Information Technology South Australia Incorporated (LGITSA).

Advancing Service Delivery Standards

Since its cloud architecture went live 13 months ago, CCS has experienced 99.999 percent uptime without service disruptions.

The council uses Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) for virtual networking, Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) for secure, resizable compute capacity, and Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) for scalable and highly available storage and backup. This provides CCS with the foundation to integrate its systems for better cross-team collaboration.

With Amazon CloudWatch, a monitoring service that provides actionable insights into system-wide performance and resource utilization, CCS receives push alerts and can now address resource allocation issues quickly. This has helped the IT team to pre-empt and act on server capacity issues before customers raise issues with the Service Desk.

The council also boosted its security posture and protected its accounts, workloads, and data with AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) for secure access management, Amazon Inspector for automated security assessment, and Amazon Guard​Duty for intelligent threat detection and continuous monitoring.

Getting Future-Ready with a World of Cloud Capabilities

According to Marc Ó Conaill, cloud and solutions architect at CCS, having an AWS team in South Australia has helped the council foster a more dynamic and innovative IT team.

“AWS understands the local context, and supports us in meeting council-specific challenges. It has also provided in-depth training to upskill our staff and developed our internal expertise. We’ve built a future-ready infrastructure with generous strategic and operational assistance from AWS Enterprise Support,” Ó Conaill commends.

CCS can now innovate and experiment at speed and it plans to adopt additional AWS services to serve its constituents better and faster.

To Learn More


About City of Charles Sturt

The City of Charles Sturt (CCS) is a council in Adelaide, South Australia, that serves and represents the interests of 120,000 constituents. CCS delivers a diverse range of public services, from public health and safety to providing amenities such as community centers, libraries, and recycling facilities.

Benefits of AWS

  • Seamless migration process that was completed in 4 months, despite pandemic-related disruptions and remote working arrangements
  • Reduced time to provision servers from 4 weeks to 8 hours
  • Push alerts to help address resource allocation issues quickly pre-empting server capacity issues 99.999 percent uptime without service disruptions
  • Positioned to leverage additional AWS services to serve its constituents better and faster  

AWS Services Used

Amazon Virtual Private Cloud

Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) gives you complete control over your virtual networking environment, including resource placement, connectivity, and security. 

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Amazon CloudWatch

Amazon CloudWatch is a monitoring and observability service built for DevOps engineers, developers, site reliability engineers (SREs), and IT managers. 

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AWS Identity and Access Management

AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) enables you to manage access to AWS services and resources securely. 

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Amazon Inspector

Amazon Inspector is an automated security assessment service that helps improve the security and compliance of applications deployed on AWS.

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