Technology Provider uses Cloud to Offer a Comprehensive eLearning suite, Reduces IT Infrastructure Requirements by 70 Percent

Oztern

“By using Windows Azure, we were able to avoid capital expenditures, such as server hardware and licensing. The cloud deployment model reduces IT infrastructure requirements by 70 percent.”

Praveen Sankar, Director Admin & Infrastructure, Oztern Technology

Overview
Country or Region: India
Industry: Education

Customer Profile
Founded in 2009, headquartered at Trivandrum, India, Oztern offers cutting edge products and services targeted at IT companies and enterprises who intend to adopt cloud computing to run their business applications.

Business Situation
Because, its customers were struggling with training budgets and were always trying to find a way to lower IT costs; Oztern decided to build a cloud-based solution that featured scalability and required minimal hardware investment.

Solution
Oztern chose the Windows Azure™ platform to create Rainbow, a highly affordable and comprehensive eLearning platform for small and midsize businesses.

Benefits
Reduces customer costs by 70 percent
Minimizes capital expenses
Provides an innovative learning platform

Founded in 2009, Oztern Technology is a solution provider company with a vision to be an industry leader in facilitating accelerated design and implementation of various software solutions in the cloud. To achieve this, Oztern created Rainbow, an affordable, comprehensive eLearning platform that enables customers to design and create content quickly and easily. Created on the Windows Azure platform, Oztern’s customers benefit from a highly scalable solution, and a sustainable business model. At the same time, customers reduce costs by 70 percent because of lower capital expenditure, operational costs, and IT infrastructure requirements.

Situation
Oztern Technology is a technology driven company founded in 2009, headquartered at Technopark, Trivandrum, India. It is an early stage cloud based eLearning solution provider.

The company provides services and solutions to effective strategies to reduce their IT operations and software development costs. “We wanted to streamline learning content life cycle including web based development, management, maintenance and delivery of eLearning content,” explains Saiju V Stella, Chief Executive Officer, both micro and small organizations and has 4 customers around the country. Oztern realized that in today’s economic environment, organizations try to balance out and optimize their training budgets. These customers are always looking out for Oztern. “We decided to develop a solution to help customers manage projects without the hassle of complicated software.”

Oztern envisioned the need of reducing time and cost for developing customized applications in the cloud. It decided to enable organizations discover, strategize, develop and commission cloud computing applications.

“We wanted to streamline learning content life cycle including web based development, management, maintenance and delivery of eLearning content.”
Saiju V Stella, Chief Executive Officer, Oztern

Solution
To meet its requirements for an easily scalable, security-enhanced cloud service that could integrate with customers’ existing server infrastructure, Oztern created Rainbow, a highly affordable and comprehensive eLearning suite that is tailor made to meet the various learning requirements of organizations. Capitalizing on Microsoft’s Cloud Computing Infrastructure Windows Azure platform, Rainbow uses a software-plus-services (S+S) approach and Microsoft development software. Windows Azure is the development, service hosting, and service management environment that provides developers with on-demand compute, storage, bandwidth, and a content distribution network to host, scale, and manage web applications through Microsoft data centers. “We selected the Windows Azure platform because of the development environment, which allows developers to focus on their business logic, as opposed to operational hurdles,” says, Abhilash Kumar, Technology Specialist, Oztern.

A highly innovative and flexible learning management system, Rainbow facilitates organizations to deliver the right package of formal, social and mobile learning. Organizations can effectively streamline training programs, thus saving a good deal of time and money.

The company takes advantage of web roles for web application programming. Development of more complex applications using Windows Azure is now possible with the introduction of Elevated Privileges and Full IIS. The new Elevated Privileges functionality for the web role provides developers with greater flexibility and control in developing, deploying and running cloud applications.

The company also uses Blob storage, part of Windows Azure, to store file attachments. Blob Storage provides persistent and durable storage in the cloud for text and binary data.

In addition, Oztern implemented Microsoft SQL Azure™, a cloud-based relational database service based on SQL Server technologies, also hosted at Microsoft data centers.
“The interest in cloud computing was growing rapidly as more vendors were making their offerings available,” says, Praveen Sankar, Director Admin & Infrastructure, Oztern. “By using Windows Azure, we enabled our customers to achieve critical levels of scalability and a security-enhanced infrastructure. As a result, they not only avoid costly capital expenditures but also the hassle of maintaining an on-premises infrastructure.”

Benefits
By deploying Rainbow on the Windows Azure platform and taking full advantage of SQL Azure, Oztern significantly reduces customer costs while offering a reliable and highly scalable solution. Oztern also sees the added benefit of easier application management and reduced IT management costs. “Because of significantly lower capital expenditure, it is possible for us to reach out to government schools in small towns who could not afford an expensive IT infrastructure. Azure enables us to take eLearning to the masses,” comments Manoj Sankar, Director, Business Initiatives, Oztern.

Reduces Costs by 70
Oztern’s eLearning suite Rainbow enables the client to reduce their costs and time for creating eLearning by enabling subject matter experts and other non-technical employees in the organization to develop courses with no programming required. It helps institutes to take advantage of the lower delivery costs of eLearning to reduce the client’s overall training spend and deliver major savings against their existing training budget.

“The easy to use suite ensures that minimal training is required to develop, update and publish courses,” says, Vaishakh Harikumar, Director Products and Delivery, Oztern. “Overall rapid course enablement saves costs. It also saves 50 percent of time required to create and design the courseware.”

Minimizes Capital Expenses
Windows Azure and SQL Azure provide enterprise-class services that help customers reduce capital and operational costs. Instead of requiring customers purchase, configure, and maintain an on-premise infrastructure, the company relies on servers hosted at Microsoft data centers. “By using Windows Azure, we were able to avoid capital expenditures, such as server hardware and licensing,” says Praveen. “The cloud deployment model reduces IT infrastructure requirements by 70 percent.”

Provides an Innovative Learning Suite
Rainbow frees customers from concerns about costly or complicated IT infrastructures and allows them to focus on creating appropriate courseware. The developed learning system engages learners with interactive eLearning courses that combine text,graphics, audio, video, and various assessment elements.

In addition, it provides an interactive online examination and assignment management system that rapidly conducts auto or manual graded assignments.

“Windows Azure is a strategic platform for our development efforts,” says Vaishakh. “With it, we have provided a solution that’s more appealing to customers and uses a business model that’s more sustainable.”

Windows Azure Platform
The Windows Azure platform provides an excellent foundation for expanding online product and service offerings. The main components include:
Windows Azure. Windows Azure is the development, service hosting, and service management environment for the Windows Azure platform. Windows Azure provides developers with on-demand compute and storage to host, scale, and manage Web applications on the Internet through Microsoft data centers. In addition, Windows Azure serves developers’ connectivity needs through the following services.
Microsoft Azure Data Market. DataMarket section of Windows Azure Marketplace, formerly known as Codename Dallas, includes data, imagery, and real-time web services from leading commercial data providers and authoritative public data sources.

Windows Azure platform AppFabric. With Windows Azure platform AppFabric, developers can build and manage applications more easily both on-premises and in the cloud.
The AppFabric Service Bus connects services and applications across network boundaries to help developers build distributed applications.

The AppFabric Access Control. Provides federated, claims-based access control for REST Web services.
Microsoft SQL Azure

Microsoft SQL Azure offers the first cloud-based relational and self-managed database service built on Microsoft SQL Server 2008 technologies.

To learn more about the Windows Azure platform, visit: www.windowsazure.com

Add Comment