Case Study: Singleton Birch Ltd.

Case Study: Singleton Birch Ltd.
Virtualisation enhances company performance and
facilitates further growth for Singleton Birch Ltd
With an ageing IT infrastructure standing in the way of continued
growth, long established market leaders Singleton Birch turned
to HBP Systems to implement a modern virtualised environment
suitable for an ambitious business that has consistently evolved
with the times.
“We now have much
more efficient and
modern servers and we
feel confident that we
could get our system
up and running quickly
following a major
disaster. Much of our
software is bespoke so
the fact that the whole
of the system is backed
up was a key factor in
our decision. ”
Tracing its roots all the way back
to 1815, Singleton Birch Ltd is a
company that has a proud past
and a very bright future, evolving
for two centuries to become the
UK’s leading independent supplier of Lime and Chalk products
and services.
Producing 300,000 tonnes of Lime and
500,000 tonnes of Chalk annually sees
Singleton Birch serve a thriving worldwide
customer base, utilising a key strategic
location within northern Lincolnshire
that is ideal for exporting. As a result, IT
forms a key component in ensuring the
effectiveness of operations, from quarrying
and production right through to export.
Fully aware of this importance, the
Singleton Birch management team
proactively set out, with the future of the
business in mind, to work closely with
a trusted IT specialist partner, in order
to ensure that their IT systems could
comfortably handle their requirements
both in the present day and the long-term
Turning to HBP Systems, an initial review of
the existing infrastructure identified several
issues that meant the introduction of
virtualised servers was required to sustain
the desired level of operations going
Over the years, the Singleton Birch IT
infrastructure had grown to requiring
fifteen physical due to the number of
services added to the network, such as
industry specific software, CAD packages,
and the task of taking information from PC’s
out on site. In the case of an emergency,
this type of setup prevented efficient data
and system recovery through disaster
recovery planning, whereas the utility costs
of maintenance and cooling were also a
factor negatively impacting the company
Additionally, since the servers were reliant
on a 32-bit legacy, the processing power
and use of modern applications was
significantly limited.
For Singleton Birch to plan ahead to future
years and improve their operations, it was
agreed that the option of virtualisation
would be the correct solution, as its
agile nature meant the new streamlined
infrastructure would open the door to
further growth.
Case Study: Singleton Birch Ltd.
As a solution, virtualisation reduces
the number of physical servers used,
consolidating the majority and using them
more effectively, albeit actually increasing
the memory capacities. Subsequently, a
company operating with an implemented
virtualised IT infrastructure benefits from
a reduction in IT ownership and reduced
utility outlays, including greater security
from easier back-up and disaster recovery
Commenting on the project since
converting to a virtualised infrastructure,
Singleton Birch Financial Director Ellen
Tatterton described the most important
benefits the company has experienced;
“Knowing our IT systems are now futureproofed makes decision making that bit
easier when we’re striving to achieve longterm ambitions for the company. “
“Also knowing our systems can even be
recovered much quicker in the event of
an emergency really does install peace of
For any company, a large infrastructure
transition is always going to be a
demanding project with noticeable barriers
to overcome, whereby all parties need to
be on the same page. In Singleton Birch’s
case, it was imperative that the services
developed and all critical software on
the old system wasn’t offline at any point
during the transition.
With the virtualised infrastructure now
in place, Singleton Birch has now turned
another corner in modernising the business.
A more modern, reliable infrastructure
will provide more room to grow and help
maintain productivity, which will collectively
aid the growth of the business.
As the business expands, the company is
reassured by the ability to utilize additional
capacities and run more services required to
perform tasks that will no doubt also grow
in complexity into the future.
Fortunately, this was overcome thanks to
careful planning between both companies,
to the delight of the team at Singleton
“The project was well planned and went
very smoothly. From the beginning of the
“We can implement more powerful, modern project the engineers from HBP Systems
programs to aid all departments, using
took our needs on board and made sure
an intelligent system that will improve
there was little disruption to business”
operations efficiency. Not to mention
explained Ellen.
what we now save financially, which
will contribute towards more important
Key Benefits
• Increased Reliability & Capacity - Modern equipment, improved processing abilities and easier to recover in emergencies
• Reduced Cost of Ownership - Less hardware and capital outlay, fewer human errors and lower running costs
• Resourceful Support - Flexible, dynamic, around the clock IT service and support
For over 20 years, HBP Systems have helped ambitious businesses grow through the
implementation, integration and support of innovative business IT systems.
Specialising in the best accounting software, IT hardware, Customer Relationship
Management and EPOS solutions for your business, supported by an exceptional range of
national accreditations and certifications, HBP Systems provide the
highest quality service dedicated to finding the perfect solutions for your
To find out how our products and services can benefit your organisation, get in touch and
call 0800 0433 106 or visit