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Case Study

From legacy to cloud transformation: on-premise becomes SaaS

About Innoface AG

Innoface AG - based in Karlsruhe, Germany - has specialised in the development of interfaces for linking ERP systems to the PTC Windchill product data management system since 2001. The company, consisting of 40 highly qualified employees, has made a name for itself in the industry thanks to its innovative strength.

The Challenge

Innoface was faced with the challenge of switching from established on-premise solutions to a cloud-based SaaS infrastructure. This transformation required not only a technological adjustment, but also a reorganisation of the business model. In close collaboration with PCG, Innoface succeeded in developing an innovative, cloud-native middleware based on modern microservices and AWS infrastructure.

A new business model - from on-premise to SaaS solution

Innoface specialises in the development of interfaces for linking ERP systems to the PTC Windchill product data management system. PTC's decision to offer its own Windchill+ product as SaaS in the cloud presented Innoface with the challenge of developing a new product that could be used as a SaaS solution alongside IFConneX, which had previously been tried and tested for on-premise applications, for linking Windchill+. For the company, this meant transforming established on-premise solutions into a cloud-based SaaS solution. The provision of a standardised interface as a service in the cloud represents a complete reorientation for Innoface.

In addition to the technological challenge, this also resulted in the need to realign the entire business and sales strategy.

The Solution

The basis for the new cloud-based middleware, called CoreFace, was developed in close collaboration with PCG's development and AWS business units. The new architecture is based on modern microservices that are operated using serverless functions (Lambda) and serverless containers (ECS/Fargate). This new technology not only enables increased flexibility and scalability, but also efficient resource utilisation thanks to the pay-as-you-go model.

Cloud-native middleware development on AWS infrastructure

The cloud-native middleware development on AWS forms the technological basis for CoreFace as a seamless integration solution for the PLM system Windchill+ with various ERP systems such as SAP R/3, S/4HANA and MS Dynamics 365 Finance & Operations. With its highly flexible no-code customisation options, CoreFace allows for a considerably simplified, highly scalable and highly available coupling of the aforementioned systems.

Modernisation of the user interfaces

The new version of the integration software offered Innoface the opportunity not only to bring the interface solution up to date technically, but also to significantly improve the modellability and configurability of the transactions. Thanks to PCG's UI/UX specialists, it was possible to provide the first easy-to-use interfaces and introduce the development team at Innoface to the new technology.

The major advantage of CoreFace: in future, interfaces can also be customised to customer requirements by trained employees at partners and customers without programming knowledge. The CoreFace concept, coupled with the provision of powerful interfaces in the UI/UX area, thus reduces implementation costs by saving time during realisation. Furthermore, a SaaS solution increases availability and reliability. In addition, customers no longer have to install the solution in their own data centre.

Results and Benefits

The successful collaboration between Innoface and PCG was based on proven methods such as scrum, stringent time and budget management and an intensive transfer of expertise. The Development-Team-as-a-Service concept in the development area created a transfer of knowledge that enabled the Innoface team to realise the foundation of the new solution in cooperation with PCG and to continue the further development of the product independently in the future.

Into the future with a digital business model

With the development of the cloud-based middleware, Innoface is looking to the future. The focus is on expanding the in-house development team, which is now optimally positioned thanks to the support of PCG and the transfer of expertise. At the same time, Innoface is planning to expand its network of sales partners in order to position the innovative solution more broadly on the market. Through these measures and the successful transition to the cloud, Innoface is not only securing a future-oriented position in the industry, but is also actively contributing to the digital transformation in the field of interface development.

About PCG

Public Cloud Group (PCG) supports companies in their digital transformation through the use of public cloud solutions.

With a product portfolio designed to accompany organisations of all sizes in their cloud journey and competence that is a synonym for highly qualified staff that clients and partners like to work with, PCG is positioned as a reliable and trustworthy partner for the hyperscalers, relevant and with repeatedly validated competence and credibility.

We have the highest partnership status with the three relevant hyperscalers: Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google, and Microsoft. As experienced providers, we advise our customers independently with cloud implementation, application development, and managed services.

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