independenceIT™ (iIT), provider of the complete cloud workspace, today announced that Student Transportation Inc. (STI) (TSX, NASDAQ: STB) has realized significant benefits from its cloud-based IT infrastructure. Through its strategic use of iIT’s Total Freedom™ Workspace, STI is able to allocate less than one percent of revenues to its IT operations while ensuring its U.S. and Canada offices have reliable, secure 24 X 7 access to all business applications from any Internet-connected device. This is a remarkable figure, representing millions of dollars in savings, as the latest Society for Information Management 2011 Annual CIO survey found that companies typically spend 3.55 percent of their annual revenues on IT.
STI Director of Information Technology and Investor Relations Keith Engelbert said, “We are an Old World business with New World technology. Working with independenceIT for the past 10 years has opened our eyes to the strategic benefits of the cloud.” Engelbert continued, “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. iIT’s innovative application layer allows us to incorporate nearly 50 business applications into our cloud infrastructure – a feat companies many times our size cannot match.”
STI is a major player in the student transportation industry with over 8,000 buses in the US and Canada and contracts with over 200 school districts. iIT was critical to the growth of the company as it allowed Engelbert and his team to scale IT operations quickly while delivering predictable costs to the finance department. While cost savings were the original reason for moving to the cloud, STI quickly found that the technology had additional benefits and could bolster its Merger & Acquisition (M&A), audit and strategic IT operations.
M&A activity is STI’s primary method of growth. The company has acquired over 40 companies since inception and has no intentions of slowing its acquisition strategy. A major challenge for companies that rely on M&A for growth is the process of integrating new companies into the existing IT infrastructure of the parent company. STI does not have this problem. iIT’s proprietary application layer allows Engelbert and his team to upload the acquired company’s data and applications and then present them via a cloud environment. This allows each of STI’s acquired companies to keep and run applications in the same way as before, while STI slowly and seamlessly integrates each organization into the new tech ecosystem.