Future-proofing network performance in mining

Future-proofing network performance in mining

26 Sep 2022
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Karora Resources is a multi-asset mineral resource company focused primarily on the acquisition, exploration, evaluation and development of precious metal properties. It’s the company’s vision to be a sustainable and responsible gold mining company that evolves into a mid-tier producer – with growth plans to double expected annual gold production by 2024 at its Beta Hunt Gold Mine and Higginsville Gold Operations in Western Australia.

Given their goals for growth, Kris Wright, IT Coordinator at Karora Resources, knew that their network needed to be up to the task of reliably and securely connecting each of the company’s four mine sites with their head office in Perth. After experiencing critical internet connectivity issues across their network, he received a recommendation to contact General Manager of Cloud Connect, Paul Perich, for support.

At the time, they were dealing with slow network speeds between sites, difficulty accessing cloud-based resources, a data entry backlog, and their team was often unable to connect to local servers.

Getting to ground zero with a network and cyber security audit

With 450+ employees across multiple mine sites, it was critical that Karora Resources had a clear picture of the performance of their entire network infrastructure.

As a first step, Brad Wake, Senior Network Engineer at Cloud Connect, recommended a full network and cyber security audit.

Once this picture was clear, they could then begin the process of identifying solutions to improve performance and support Karora’s future growth trajectory.

“IT can often be viewed as a problem for the “too hard” basket which results in a reactive environment. Before partnering with Cloud Connect things felt chaotic and it was difficult to identify what the fundamental problems were that we needed to fix. Cloud Connect’s recommendation of an initial network and security audit was the first step toward taking back full control of our IT processes, ultimately leading to greater efficiencies across the entire business.” 

Kris Wright, IT Coordinator, Karora Resources.

Uncovering ways to get a remote network performing at its best

Cloud Connect reviewed existing network and cyber security infrastructure with a view to identify strategic recommendations to optimise its performance. This involved two key phases:

1. Reviewing current network performance

Cloud Connect conducted a network audit to review:

  • existing hardware including desktops, servers and peripherals
  • general security including user access and management
  • Wi-fi suitability and security
  • network speed and availability
  • redundant or unsupported devices.

2. Mitigating cyber risks to ensure business continuity

Karora Resources’ network and hardware was evaluated to:

  • ensure it was up-to-date
  • identify potential vulnerabilities in the IT environment
  • verify its performance was being optimised, and
  • review if business-critical data was secure.

The audit found that Karora Resources would benefit from a reconfiguration of their network and a unified approach across all devices to ensure they had an easily deployable network solution should they need it. It also identified that some of the security devices protecting them at the point of entry weren’t configured to provide the security they were expecting.

Leveraging world-class network and connectivity solutions, delivered locally

Working collaboratively with Kris, Brad and the Cloud Connect team identified several key solutions that would free up the company’s IT resources and enable them to get back to doing what they do best, including:

  • Reconfiguring security devices to protect the business at the point of entry
  • Implementing unified network processes and procedures
  • Collaborating with Fortinet to design a comprehensive solution that would improve connectivity and security across five sites.
  • Prioritisation of traffic to speed up connectivity
  • Improved insights into external network security breach attempts
  • Including a cold-swap spare that could be deployed as a plug-and-play device at any mine site to ensure continuity of service in the future.
  • Instantly resolving many mystery networking issued their previous provider could not resolve.

“Karora has since reported improved network speeds, less congestion and uninterrupted connectivity. This means they can move out of a reactive space and into planning and monitoring mode since they now have the foundations in place for solid connectivity and security. That’s why custom solutions are so important, regardless of a business’ size.”

Brad Wake, Senior Network Engineer, Cloud Connect.

What does the future hold?

Cloud Connect continues to be a trusted partner for Karora Resources by providing ongoing tech support through Managed IT Services including help desk support. This means they can now spend less time troubleshooting and more time working on growing their production, thanks to reliable access to our team of technicians.

Words of advice

Kris’s advice to any business, big or small, is to talk to, and trust, credible technology partners. He believes undertaking planning with experts in your corner is fundamental to helping you set up your network correctly from the start and with the bigger picture in mind.

The team at Cloud Connect is committed to getting to know your business so they can work with you to set a roadmap for your IT strategy. They’re also not afraid to say “no” when a tech solution isn’t going to suit your needs. They believe that great results come from great partnerships, and that’s why they build lasting relationships with the businesses they work with.

Ask Cloud Connect the difficult questions because they can answer them directly and with your best interests at heart. Making sure your IT systems are set up properly means more peace of mind, less unknowns, and the ability to develop your systems from a strong starting point.

It’s hard to know what you don’t know, which is why Cloud Connect has been a trusted partner for Karora Resources in not just helping us put better technology in place, but in facilitating an IT culture change from the ground up.”

Kris Wright, IT Coordinator, Karora Resources.

Contact us today

If you would like to learn more about how Cloud Connect can help your business please fill out the form and our friendly team will be in touch shortly, or give us a call today on (08) 9481 4988.

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