The STIWA Group is an internationally successful group of companies, which includes STIWA Holding GmbH and its operating subsidiaries. The metalworking company, founded in 1972 and based in Attnang-Puchheim, Upper Austria, is now run by its second generation of owners. STIWA is a leading company in the field of high-performance automation and primarily serves the areas of automation, supplier production of automotive parts and software. Other business areas of operation include laboratory and building automation.
STIWA currently operates eight other sites in Austria, China, the U.S. and Germany as well as its main plant in Attnang. The company epitomizes the Austrian mid-sized sector and has a constantly expanding, highly trained workforce currently at more than 1,800 employees.
Replacing the Uncontrolled Growth of Solutions with a Unified Solution
STIWA has enjoyed steady growth from day one. Over time, though, as new locations, company branches and specialist departments developed, so did the IT—and with it, more and more structures that were intended to manage the exchange of data.
“To begin with, our FTP solutions were adequate for our purposes, but just not very convenient,” explains an accountable IT system specialist at STIWA. “The multitude of different solutions came about through uncontrolled growth. There were different processes and technical solutions for exchanging data with different partners. Some were only able to send or receive limited file sizes by
email. We also limited the file size upon receipt to avoid being overwhelmed by very large files. The challenge was to replace this plethora of solutions, including email, FTP and file sharing solutions such as Dropbox, with a single, unified solution.”
Shadow IT has Increasingly Become a Challenge for IT
Free solutions like Dropbox in particular were very tempting for employees, not least because they are very easy to use.
“Its simplicity of use fuels the notorious shadow IT phenomenon that is totally beyond our control,” continued the IT system specialist. “For security reasons, we had already prohibited exchange of data via Dropbox some time ago. However, employees are very cunning when it comes to finding their own ways to get around problems. This is out of nothing more than sheer motivation to do their job.”
STIWA’s IT top management recognized the problem and assigned the IT department to find a solution. The IT department management explains the decision, “Eliminating shadow IT was the key driver for seeking a completely new solution. However, it was just as important for us to present ourselves to the outside world as a technology company, using a professional solution to exchange files.”
Armed with this brief, the IT team was able to finally start exploring a solution.
Ipswitch MOVEit Ahead of All Competitors— Convenient Management Interface and Intuitive Operation
The team explained their approach to the challenge, “We drafted all our requirements internally, both from an IT perspective and
in terms of the security this solution needed to provide. We also interviewed a representative cross-section of the users who would
be working with the new solution day in and day out. Building on the defined requirements and feedback received, we then created a
comprehensive evaluation matrix which we used to rate the various providers on the market.
The team continued, “First, we carried out a rough comparison of functions against our core requirements, which filtered down the
pool of vendors. We were left with only two solutions that could meet all our core requirements.”
treeConsult, a Freising, Germany-based company, supported the STIWA team in the detailed evaluation and a subsequent PoC and helped them come to this decision. In the end, Ipswitch MOVEit® won out, as this solution offered all the functionality required, and on top of that, boasted a convenient administration interface and intuitive operation.
The integration and gradual deployment through the various departments of the company went without a hitch. “The user experiences self-explanatory and very intuitive operation,” reports the IT team. “We trained employees in small groups or used our in-house training structures.”
The MOVEit Enterprise License means the solution can be made available to each individual employee, which is important for
companies especially when it comes to security and GDPR.
“The GDPR has far-reaching consequences and MOVEit is a clear help in this respect,” said the IT system specialist. “For example, the human resources department runs elements of applicant communication via MOVEit and finds it easier to comply with the stricter requirements demanded for data protection. MOVEit even helps us eliminate the shadow IT that was previously used when exporting databases or CAD models in development, generally involving very large files in those areas that routinely transfer such large amounts of data.“
“STIWA allowed us to stay by their side from the evaluation phase to the decision to opt for MOVEit and the subsequent installation, which happened without any major problems,” said project manager Aaron Siegl at treeConsult, describing the implementation. Ipswitch’s excellent support was always there for us. STIWA has integrated an excellent solution with MOVEit— one that covers all pre-defined requirements, complies with the new GDPR and is fully endorsed by users. Our close cooperation with the IT department meant that even after MOVEit went operational, we were able to react flexibly to new requirements and solve them with MOVEit.”
The response from the workforce was very positive. “After the first rollout, employees fed back to us that the solution was exactly
what they needed,” said the IT system specialist. “Not only for sending large files, but also receiving them in a managed way.”
The solution has been in use for more than a year, and users, IT department and division managers alike are fully satisfied.
“In summary, we have fully met the requirement to find a solution that eliminates shadow IT and replaces obsolete, cumbersome solutions such as FTP with a new, more modern and more simple solution,” concludes the IT system specialist. “As far as our users are concerned, the solution is very simple and intuitive and has been seamlessly integrated into the email workflow. We now have in-house file transfer securely under our control exactly as we need it—thanks to MOVEit. It’s nice to see that there are still IT solutions that genuinely help users and do not just create new obstacles to hurdle.”