Gaining Flexibility, Agility, and Value with the HPE GreenLake Edge-to-Cloud Platform
It seems like everyone is on a digital transformation journey these days, but that oft-used buzzword can mean widely divergent experiences for different companies. For some, digital transformation is about moving to more paperless processes. For others, it means replacing hardware. And for companies like ARUS, it means becoming more agile and leveraging technology to create more added value for customers.
I am the Director of Technological Infrastructure at Enlace Operativo, a Colombian information services and hosting provider with 33 years of experience. The Enlace Operativo company and platform is responsible for operating the information process of the Integrated Contribution Settlement Worksheet (PILA), managing the companies’ social security processes, and offering tools for unemployment insurance payments, voluntary pension, and payroll.
Enlace Operativo has been a business unit within Arus since the 2011 merger of Enlace Operativo and Compuredes. The company has approximately 150,000 clients in nine countries and offers technology outsourcing, IT and information management and control, maintenance, support and installation of telecommunications infrastructure, infrastructure networks, development of specialized software and payroll services, among others. It’s one of the conglomerate companies known as Grupo Empresarial Antioqueño (GEA), alongside other renown companies such as Bancolombia, SURA, Nutresa, and Argos.
Until recently, Enlace Operativo hosted all our infrastructure on premises, but we wanted to discover alternatives to help us become more agile. We had previously used HPE 3PAR storage and servers that had served us well but were long past obsolete. We needed to renew, but at the same time, we were also running some applications in the cloud at a significant expense. We thought: What if we could simultaneously upgrade our equipment while reducing our costs?
A Solution Like No Other
We already had a long partnership with Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE). We’d even begun to offer our clients services through the HPE GreenLake edge-to-cloud platform. Now, we wondered if the HPE GreenLake platform would be beneficial for our purposes.
After engaging in some discussion with HPE, we discovered that we could be more flexible and cost-efficient by leveraging the HPE GreenLake platform approach. We could also transform from a CapEx to an OpEx model, which would balance costs over a longer period and open up new business opportunities.
I did my due diligence, going through the exercise of meeting with other infrastructure providers to find alternative solutions. But the fact is, there is no competitive hybrid model compared to what the HPE GreenLake platform offered. Other providers don't have a comparable edge-to-cloud platform, so it became a relatively easy decision for us to transition to the HPE GreenLake platform.
Cost Efficiencies, Compliance, and Predictive Capabilities
The first thing we did once adopting the HPE GreenLake platform was to repatriate our workloads away from AWS public cloud. Doing so saved a lot of money, and coupled with a private cloud, we could scale to different capacities and services for our clients, such as providing more personalized solutions. Not only was it more cost-efficient to pay only for what we use, but we forecasted that it would be more time-efficient since we wouldn’t have to worry about this technology becoming obsolete in the future. We could trust this technology for a long time without thinking about renewing or refreshing it every three to four years.
Another major benefit of the HPE GreenLake platform is its speed of provisioning. With other platforms, the vendor has to go out and acquire everything through a purchase order process that can take up to 45 days. Meanwhile, with the HPE GreenLake platform, we can order more capacity the moment we need it.
We’ve also seen benefits from the predictive analytics that the HPE GreenLake platform provides. The predictive capabilities not only eliminate issues before they become a problem, it helps us provision our capabilities to meet our growth. That allows us to move a lot faster and achieve our goal of becoming more agile. The HPE GreenLake platform enables us to be both on premises and have high availability on our platform, and that will also help us meet the requirements for Colombian government compliance.
Early Results Are Promising
Work began on the architecture in September 2020 and we became fully implemented with the HPE GreenLake platform in August 2021. We’ve nearly finished migrating our 182 on-premises servers, which should be complete by January 2022. Once that’s complete, we plan to create more services in the areas of innovation and development business.
Though we are still early in our implementation, we have already seen performance benefits. On the customer side, we have seen increased stability and better response times. Outside of Colombia, our response times went from 150–300 milliseconds to 86 milliseconds. Within Colombia, we are down to 15–25 milliseconds. Our integration with the HPE GreenLake platform has also improved our execution times by 10%.
The HPE GreenLake platform adds a lot of value to our organization, including assigning a dedicated team member to handle our platform management. This management, along with the predictive capabilities of the HPE GreenLake platform, gives us time to focus on more important things, like better decision-making and developing new types of services.
Unmatched Service and Support
The most positive aspect of our partnership with HPE is their service and support. From the beginning, the HPE account and support team sat down with us to develop ideas around the best ways to build to support our needs and those of our clients. We’re now working through a similar process with HPE regarding our backup solution.
HPE offers the best support and a premium service that accompanies us on our transformation journey. Thanks to the HPE GreenLake platform, we can provide more value to our customers and stay ahead of our competitors.