Growing to new markets whilst reducing costs through AWS and DevOps.
Lumesse, a UK based independent human capital management (HCM) software vendor company has over 2400 customers and is home to some of the most-used HR software globally, with millions of users.
Lumesse originally built their infrastructure in data centres, but having set an objective to close two legacy sites they had to find a new solution, quickly. Lumesse considered migrating their servers to the cloud, as well as to other physical data centres, and after contacting Amazon Web Services in the UK, Nordcloud were recommended as a partner to help them on their journey to the AWS Cloud.
After learning more about the Lumesse business, our UK team explored the various ways the cloud could be used to increase competitiveness, as well as meet their requirement to migrate out of the existing data centres. We presented a roadmap of how Lumesse could build an AWS-based infrastructure that could be deployed globally, repeating services in a cost-effective way across new regions to service new and existing markets. We also set the foundation for a cultural shift to gain the benefits of a DevOps culture, such as agility and increased developer productivity. After seeing what they could gain by driving their IT through the cloud, starting with a migration, Lumesse hired Nordcloud to design and build an optimised cloud infrastructure on the AWS Cloud.
As a SaaS business, Lumesse stood to gain a large amount from the cloud. We took an iterative approach to migrating Lumesse to AWS, which began with collaboration to gather requirements that could be turned into a blueprint for repetition in each of the desired regions. Nordcloud are migrating two of the applications – each of which has multiple customers with 10s of thousands of end users – region by region, first starting with a region only having 10 customers, moving on to a region with 30, and in the current iteration, a region with over 200 customers.
The process by which we have moved each customer has allowed us to improve delivery, using CloudFormation to initialise environments and subsequently using Chef to configure instances. This has vastly improved the deployment and configuration of each component of the service, such as database and contributes toward the end goal for Lumesse. Where possible in the first iteration, Nordcloud developed templates that could be used to deploy a Region with VPCs and the relevant networking and security based on the parameters for that site. Subsequently the next layer of the stack is also managed by templates through CloudFormation and will provision the VPC Peering, Security Groups and VPN connectivity to extend their current Data Centers for each region. Finally templates are then used to deploy Directory, SQL and Web servers, as well as the required security groups, configuration and ELBs for each customer.
Once instances are bootstrapped, they are handed over to Chef to allow configuration of the Servers and the Software they host. This has allowed us to capture the majority of system configuration that Lumesse use and replicated the delivery of Servers, saving hours for each customer build.
Conducting a migration as such – from a very traditional hardware configuration – has required a shift in culture too. Nordcloud are helping Lumesse understand how to prepare their applications and servers for operation in the cloud, making use of automation technology that can ensure their applications will cope with failure or scaling events. To really help achieve the goal of operating a true Multi-Tenanted Highly Available SaaS Platform, we have encouraged and enabled teams to understand the need to communicate more freely from the outset of a project. As a result, workflow is improving and with each iteration ‘we’ as a team of Lumesse and Nordcloud are accelerating the path to success.
By moving to the AWS Cloud, Lumesse will be able to save half a million pounds per year in operational costs. This has been achieved just by moving them into the AWS Cloud and terminating valueless arrangements with traditional data centre providers. In the future Nordcloud estimated further savings can be gained by optimising the use of AWS through utilisation of auto-scaling and Nordcloud’s Managed Cloud offering. To this end, Lumesse will be able to lower their operational costs and improve their SLAs. Migrating Lumesse onto AWS is just the first phase of the project as it provides the foundation for a wider cultural transformation; more open communication across dev and ops teams, introducing partner technologies such as Datadog into their practices, and building a DevOps culture that will release value to the end-users quicker are some of the future benefits Lumesse is set to gain as our partnership develops going forward.
About the Company.
Lumesse is an independent human capital management (HCM) software vendor providing products to support various elements of the Employee life-cycle. Their Talent Management Portfolio includes Talent Acquisition (Recruiting, Applicant Tracking, Onboarding), Talent Management (Performance, Compensation, Succession, 360 Feedback) and Learning (Learning Management, Course Authoring, Bespoke Programmes). This UK based company has over 2400 customers and is home to some of the most-used HR software globally, with millions of users.
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