Student Transportation Inc. (STI) has selected EarthLink Cloud Workspace and Cloud Hosting for its IT infrastructure.
Officials said STI will leverage this virtual infrastructure to control numerous applications, extend secure access to employees on any device at any location, rapidly fold in new customers and acquisitions, and satisfy its audit requirements.
In the past few years, STI has acquired more than 40 companies and rapidly grown its portfolio of customers. To help in keeping students safe, STI employs advanced technology, such as buses equipped with GPS and mobile surveillance video systems.
EarthLink's Cloud Workspace is a customized cloud environment that supports the more than 60 applications needed to run STI's operations, and it helps enable the company's rapid growth to distributed locations.
The STI team uploads the acquired company's data and applications, integrating them into STI's tech ecosystem, and then presents them in the cloud environment, avoiding integration complexities. With Cloud Workspace, STI's IT team controls its applications from a central location, extending secure access to employees on any device at any location.
"EarthLink Cloud Workspace enables us to incorporate 60 business applications into our cloud infrastructure," said Keith Engelbert, CTO — investor relations, STI. "What started as a cost-saving IT project quickly blossomed into something much bigger as we realized the cloud could be a major business enabler for us."
The company also chose EarthLink's Cloud Hosting to run its new SchoolWheels Direct program, a recently launched fee-based busing system direct to parents. SchoolWheels Direct runs in the cloud out of EarthLink's data centers, including the new STI application, SafeStop, a mobile app for parents and school districts to securely monitor SchoolWheels vehicles while en route to and from school.
Additional features include a custom Alert Notification System that can be used to communicate weather, traffic, emergency and other safety information in real time.
Utilizing Cloud Workspace also provides STI with an advantage in meeting compliance requirements by eliminating the challenge of auditing multiple locations, because all applications are hosted in an EarthLink data center with SSAE 16 compliant process controls and infrastructure, officials said.
EarthLink Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing Michael D. Toplisek said, "As a growing, publicly traded company, STI took advantage of the cost-savings and convenience of the cloud and how Cloud Workspace simplifies audits and IT operations. Cloud Workspace is also proving a key competitive differentiator for them, as STI's speed to integrate new clients and strategic acquisitions makes them an even more agile competitor. Clients often find that Cloud Workspace is not just an IT strategy, but a tremendously strategic business advantage."