Established in 2008, Future Biogas is at the forefront of the anaerobic digestion industry.
They are a highly experienced developer and operator of AD plants across the UK, and able to provide full service capabilities of development, construction, operations, ongoing compliance and asset management, both to their own projects and to those of third parties. Their plants convert a wide range of feedstocks into clean, renewable energy, through a process of anaerobic digestion which produces biogas. Biogas can either be used to generate green electricity, or upgraded into biomethane and injected in to the UK’s national gas network.
Warwick Hampden-Woodfall, one of Freeman Clarke’s principals, met with Future Biogas in March 2016 and drafted an Initial Assessment which focussed on integrating Future Biogas’s industrial computing environments with the traditional operational computing environment, with improved support from its partners.
Warwick also presented his assessment and strategy to the company boards that represent Future Biogas’s clients, achieving buy in for the new approach.
Initial activities focussed around driving better value from Future Biogas’s existing IT Support Partner and in particular delivering a seamless network to connect their nine sites. A very expensive leased-line network connecting back to a data-centre was on the table and this was the catalyst for Managing Director Philipp Lukas to ask if there was a better way to provide connectivity. As Philipp explains:
Working on behalf of different stakeholders, managing and operating successful AD plants across the UK, we needed to provide the best possible comprehensive network solution, but at the most cost-effective price. The target was to incorporate the industrial computers into a network, and to provide improved communications for all our remote locations. Engaging Warwick as our part-time IT Director, at board level, has proved extremely worthwhile, as he has implemented an IT strategy and developed the business to the point where we are now able to manage this ourselves.
Warwick has led the following initiatives over the last year to deliver on the strategic approach:
• established an IT budget
• carried out an RFP process to engage with a more suitable supplier
• implemented an MPLS WAN comprising business DSL, rural Wi-Fi and Satellite
• established a data acquisition methodology to collect data from industrial computers
• implemented a service management culture within the supply chain
• replaced ad hoc mobile telephony provision with a structured approach from a partner
• led a consultancy process for a new ERP system.
Carole Forth, Future Biogas’s Office Manager says:
Warwick has a wealth of experience in the IT industry and very quickly familiarised himself with the company and our requirements, and put strategic plans in place to resolve issues and develop our IT network to keep pace with our fast growing business. We are now much better placed having recruited, with Warwick’s help, a Head of IT and IT Systems Engineer and now provide our own IT Support Helpdesk in-house.