HINT chooses greenDatacenter Zurich West as the base for its IT services
HINT AG, a company specialized in IT services for companies and institutions in the healthcare sector, was looking for a state-of-the-art, second data center, and they decided in favor of greenDatacenter Zurich West. The new private cage in the Lupfig data center allows HINT to concentrate on its core business, providing first-class IT services.
«HINT sees itself as an IT provider who offers its customers the best possible service. That’s why we want to be able to ensure that these services are operated in highly optimized data centers.»
Markus Goldschmid, CEO HINT AG
Lenzburg-based HINT AG specializes in providing IT services for the healthcare and social services sector, including hospitals, nursing homes, geriatric institutions, psychiatric clinics, and home care providers.
HINT offers services ranging from conception, implementation, and operation of e- health solutions to complete IT outsourcing. The company has more than 120 employees who are responsible for around 4,500 workstations and more than 5,400 users. As an application service provider, the company runs more than 350 applications, including 40 core applications.
Availability and data security play a major role in the healthcare sector. Healthcare companies and institutions have extremely high requirements when it comes to protecting their stored information. As a provider of IT outsourcing services to customers in the healthcare sector, HINT requires high-performance, efficient, and secure data centers.
Since the beginning of 2012, HINT has operated from two data centers. For historical reasons, the older of the two data centers is located on the grounds of the Aarau Canton Hospital (KSA). This center was renovated and expanded in 2007 in accordance with the prevailing standards at that time. In 2009, the company also moved into a second data center in Glattbrugg, which today serves as the primary data center. In 2012, the HINT IT strategy was reviewed. The analysis showed that the data center on the KSA grounds could not keep up with future requirements. In Green Datacenter AG HINT AG particular, the data center’s security standards were no longer state-of-the-art, and another upgrade similar to 2007 was not an alternative due to the higher requirements. Management therefore decided to evaluate the use of another external data center.
HINT worked with a consulting firm specialized in data centers to put together a criteria catalog for the evaluation. One of the most important criteria was security. It was imperative to find a data center that offered maximum availability, protection from unauthorgreenDatacenter Zurich West in Lupfig. Operator Green Datacenter AG was able to meet all requirements and received the highest score of all evaluated operators. The scope and quality of data center services and the data center’s extensive certifications were the final deciding factors for the Lupfig data center. Markus Goldschmid, CEO at HINT, summarized the decision process: “When the evaluation was complete, Green Datacenter was clearly the top candidate according to the criteria catalog. The overall package fit.” ized access, and the relevant certifications. The IT service provider also had geographical conditions: it was looking for a data center that was within an 80-km radius of the second data center site in Glattbrugg and also offered the best data connections and minimal risks in its environment. High operational energy efficiency was also a very important criterion for HINT.
At the beginning of 2012, HINT took this criteria catalog and wrote to a select number of data center operators asking them to provide information on security, sustainability, and costs. In a second step, this information was reviewed on-site to obtain a first-hand impression of the centers. And in the summer of 2012, a decision was made in favor of greenDatacenter Zurich West in Lupfig. Operator Green Datacenter AG was able to meet all requirements and received the highest score of all evaluated operators. The scope and quality of data center services and the data center’s extensive certifications were the final deciding factors for the Lupfig data center. Markus Goldschmid, Service Delivery Manager at HINT, summarized the decision process: “When the evaluation was complete, Green Datacenter was clearly the top candidate according to the criteria catalog. The overall package fit.”
greenDatacenter Zurich West was the right answer to all of HINT’s requirements. The Lupfig location boasts outstanding accessibility and is easily reached by highways A1 and A2 and by train. It is located near HINT headquarters in Lenzburg and is also an appropriate distance from the primary data center in Glattbrugg. Green Datacenter’s IT center offers the highest security standards and has been awarded Tier III design certification by the Uptime Institute. It is also ISO- 27001-certified for top information security. Compliance with FINMA and ISAE-3402 can be audited by a certification body. And with a PUE of 1.4, greenDatacenter Zurich West is one of the most energy-efficient data centers in Switzerland.
In March 2013, HINT moved into a private cage, an individual server room in a steel cage. Green Datacenter AG installed most of the cabling and set up the racks. HINT took advantage of the move to a new data center to update many of its systems. Parallel to the move, the IT service provider is working on half a dozen upgrade projects, such as for storage systems, network development, and virtual platforms.
By moving into a private cage in the green- Datacenter Zurich West instead of updating the data center on the KSA grounds, HINT benefits from the complete infrastructure of a new state-of-the art data center building without the investment costs. And HINT has sufficient space for future growth. As a data center customer, HINT no longer has to be concerned with the operation of the complex infrastructure or the maintenance of power and data feeds and cooling. The Lenzburg company can now fully concentrate on its core competency: providing first-class IT services to healthcare institutions and companies.
Plus HINT benefits from the greenDatacenter security measures: While many parts of the KSA data center were accessible as a result of its location on the KSA grounds, the data center in Lupfig has heightened security measures— from surveillance cameras in and around the building to separate entry access and biometric entry control. Yet the responsible HINT IT personnel has 24-hour access.
From the very beginning, HINT was looking for a long-term partner, a Swiss company that could provide data center services. The Lenzburg company has found the right partner, Green Datacenter AG. Collaboration between the two teams was smooth and pleasant at all times.
Markus Goldschmid is convinced that by choosing Green Datacenter as its partner, HINT has taken the right path for the future as well: “The requirements placed on a data center, especially with respect to security and high availability, will continue to increase,” he points out. “HINT sees itself as an IT provider who offers its customers the best possible service. That’s why we want to be able to ensure that these services are operated in highly optimized data centers.”
Scope of services
Management of the Supplier Committee
Project Management Tasks
Rack evaluation and deployment
Installation of security systems
Data centre space in private room