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Comprehensive Enterprise Data Strategies

A global consulting firm launches extensive data services with an Actifio foundation

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Success feeds success. That’s been the case for Actifio and one of its largest consulting business clients. It started with smooth data migration and grew to a comprehensive data action plan. Actifio helped the client to streamline and save in DevOps, backup, DR, cloud data transfers, and data backup on any cloud. That led to broader collaboration. Together we’ve developed a data strategy and are creating Enterprise Data Services in support of their business globally. It’s all worked so well for them that a new consulting practice is planned to provide the same powerful capabilities to their clients.

“We started with DevOps and data migration. But it didn’t take long before we were collaborating on a more strategic data strategy that covered everything from backup and DevOps to cloud agility. It’s worked so well for them that a new consulting practice is planned to provide the same capabilities to their clients.”

Organization Overview

This global consulting firm of 20,000+ individuals builds value for customers in cybersecurity, analytics, digital solutions, engineering, and science. They serve as problem-solvers for industries that range from defense to health, energy, and international development. This is a company dedicated to innovation and solving tomorrow’s challenges. Actifio is proud of the trusted partnership we share and committed to helping them to build advanced solutions across a diverse base of international clients..

The Challenge

Major technology consulting firms face all the same IT hurdles that challenge every enterprise in every industry.
And For this Actifio consulting partner, IT operations had become too complicated, too expensive, too inefficient. Public cloud and Hybrid IT options held great promise, but they needed a transition strategy that could flexibly satisfy backup, disaster recovery, and DevOps with room to grow.

The firm had multiple data centers in different time zones, which they used for production as well as disaster recovery (DR) protection. They were using some cloud services but wanted to increase their cloud options without supplier lock-in. Their idea was to tailor uses of AWS, Azure, and Google clouds according to application and functional requirements as well as individual client preferences. And they wanted to move data among the clouds without financial penalty.

The infrastructure team also needed to address storage space limitations impacting application development, QA, and data backup. Lack of storage capacity restricted DevOps, and particularly QA access to current production data, which reduced productivity and limited their ability to make rapid changes as new requirements developed.

The first major initiative was to migrate the Dev/QA storage environment to another data center where there was greater availability of on-site storage. But they needed a safe, non-disruptive solution to make a move effectively and with minimal risk.

Another initiative was to streamline an inefficient on-premises DR program and move it to the cloud. Monthly DR testing had become extremely cumbersome, manual, disruptive, and expensive. However, to make the cloud move, they required a simple automated process. It had to be effective, efficient, and, of course, fit their budget.

A Single Platform, Multiple Solutions

The CTO had heard positive reports on Actifio and asked his staff to have a look. They were intrigued by the possibilities and saw their data migration project as a good fit. There were three key measures of success: simplicity, low risk, and affordability. Application development and QA data would be moved to a different data center to gain increased storage capacity. However, they wanted users to maintain data access and have no productivity impacts throughout the move.

Actifio Sky was implemented in both data centers, and data ingested at the source location was seamlessly transferred to the remote site. Once all data was in place, the source site was decommissioned. The process was fully automated, and developers could maintain productive access throughout. But successful data transfer was only the first phase.

In their previous DevOps environment, the team required multiple physical data copies. It was a slow-moving process that involved massive storage capacity and manual system administrator intervention. Now, with the data virtualized by Actifio, developers had self-service access to unlimited copies with no impact on storage capacity. A single masked virtual copy serves all user requirements. Developers can help themselves to a new virtual copy in ~5 minutes with no need for assistance from the infrastructure team.

Their early DevOps success, and developing collaboration with the Actifio team, had the client looking at the platform in a new light. They saw a new way to gain agility, save on storage costs, and streamline backup and DR. They wanted the flexibility to combine on-premises and cloud resources. Actifio provided a reliable and cost-effective method to move data in and out of public cloud platforms. Now they can do it without financial penalties or vendor lock-in.

Actifio is helping the client to develop a more comprehensive approach to data management. It goes beyond backup to DR, DevOps, Test Data Management (TDM), Analytics, Business Intelligence, and Data Warehousing. Actifio satisfies all with a single virtualization platform. Legacy systems, licenses, and expenses disappear while creating a true Enterprise Data Strategy.

“Now they have a simple solution for multiple requirements, including instant data access and transfers to and from any cloud. Actifio is the conduit that makes their vision a reality.”

Immediate Benefits

  • Enterprise Data Services The client, in collaboration with Actifio’s account team, has created a comprehensive data management vision. Mutual relationships have grown more strategic, bringing shared benefits and profitability.
  • Five Year Expense Savings
    • $1M+ — Reduced storage sprawl, slower storage growth, storage reclamation
    • $1.9M+ — Point solutions eliminated
    • $2.8M+ — License and Maintenance renewals eliminated
  • A Single Platform, Multiple Solutions Actifio’s data virtualization platform handles DevOps, data backup, disaster recovery, and agile data movement to and from public clouds with no financial penalty. The simple operational platform eliminates numerous point solutions, reduces the storage vendor count, and improves available storage utilization.
  • Disaster Recovery and Failover Testing The client has used Actifio to improve RTO/RPO agility while creating a robust and reliable set of DR capabilities. A previously slow and cumbersome monthly testing process has become easy, fast, and automated.
  • Application Development, Testing, and QA Using Actifio, the client has created new DevOps and QA services that provide developers self-service access to accelerated high-quality development and testing resources. Application cycle times are accelerated, costs eliminated, and resources streamlined.
  • A New Consulting Practice Together with the benefits they see internally, the client plans to begin offering a new service set to their customer base. The new practice will provide expertise and Actifio-based technology supporting cloud migrations, DevOps, and Enterprise Data Strategies.