This financial institution is on a journey to create a new world of financial services, challenging the status quo and looking for ways to be better; for its customers, partners and employees. A prominent financial services provider in Australia and New Zealand, the company’s major product line is consumer finance.
This financial services organisation offers personal loans, credit cards, car loans, and personal insurance; and partners with some of the region’s most iconic and successful retailers driving retail finance business.
With an existing Oracle Exadata Database Machine and related services nearing end of life and approaching maximum performance capacity, the organisation required a solution to meet their future needs. Exadata runs all the company’s business critical database workloads including online transaction processing, data warehousing, and in-memory analytics which feed into credit collection solutions. This allows the financial services provider to service its consumers efficiently across the entire originations process, from new customer product origination to approval/funds disbursal.
Barely coping with current workloads, the company’s existing Exadata system (X2-2) was five versions behind the current version (X7-2) and could not accommodate future growth. In addition, the organisation had planned a production data centre move, presenting the ideal opportunity to start fresh.
“The planning process was highly iterative and collaborative. We worked very closely with the client to weigh up the options to produce the best outcome for their business.”
Victor Lal Account General Manager, DXC
The relocating and upgrading of an outdated platform also presented a high risk of outage to critical systems. The company required a tight cutover and minimal outage to ensure availability for key business as usual (BAU) operations.
Since DXC already supported the company’s full infrastructure stack, the team had first hand insight into the client’s business requirements. DXC proactively undertook careful evaluation of platform options in order to determine the best fit-for-purpose solution.
Victor Lal, DXC’s account general manager said, “The planning process was highly iterative and collaborative. We worked very closely with the client to weigh up the options to produce the best outcome for their business.”
The solution involved several vendors who were involved in the implementation. Managed overall by DXC, all parties worked in sync to run multiple activities in parallel.
DXC’s team were responsible for negotiating the Oracle commercials and provisioned the technical elements of the new Exadata X7 infrastructure deployment, configuration and operational readiness. With over eight years’ experience delivering Exadata solutions and services across all major models and deployment sizes, DXC Technology’s Oracle practice in Australia and New Zealand is the largest independent provider of Oracle consulting and managed services in the region.
As a result of DXC’s expertise, the client felt supported throughout the entire project. The program manager for the financial services provider said: “DXC was able to bring together all parties to migrate our critical business systems with no impact to BAU. The execution was flawless from procurement through to delivery.”
The Exadata upgrade project was a large and extremely complex new infrastructure deployment with mission critical workloads, over 20 database upgrades, and 12 separate IT change events required to go live.
DXC led the design, build, upgrade and deployment/migration of the new environment with unique technical excellence and high-quality deliverables, even with the rigid milestone deadlines (due to impending data centre move) in just three months. The project included the removal of end of life hardware at the existing data centre and the implementation of new state-of-the art technology, while also leveraging the opportunity to install new infrastructure into the brand new data centre. This eliminated the potential risk involved in relocating old technology from the second existing data centre which was decommissioned.
The entire program was split into three phases — each then split into production and non-production environments across the two separate centres:
- Phase 1: New Exadata X7-2 installation
- Phase 2: In place database upgrades
- Phase 3: Database migrations
Just one week prior to scheduled go live, the existing Exadata system starting failing and immediate implementation ahead of schedule was requested — which the DXC team was able to accommodate.
“The new Exadata environment is absolutely flying, it is reliable and has the capacity for additional workloads to support the company’s business needs well into the future.”
Victor Lal Account General Manager, DXC
Keys to success
Activities successfully ran in parallel as a result of the seamless collaboration between all parties. DXC ran a master schedule with strong collaboration amongst multiple sales, solution design, delivery and operational support teams; as well as key project engagement partners, Oracle, AT&T, and the backup and data centre facilities/onsite teams.
DXC Catalyst project management methodologies were proactively applied; the OEDA (Oracle Exadata Deployment Assistant) tool was used to capture and create the configuration for new Exadata X7 systems commissioning; and the Oracle data guard migration approach ensured a flawless workload migration cutover with no business impact for the client.
Delivery of timely technical workshops ensured complex technical solutions were planned well ahead of time with smooth subsequent delivery. Detailed cutover plans were developed, with every single risk considered prior to execution. Backup, and DBA teams worked together throughout the delivery lifecycle to quickly and efficiently resolve any technical issues.
This level of planning and oversight was essential since the company’s hard deadline meant any delays had potential to impact the impending data centre migration and move.