The IT team needed to support business growth
Focused on providing clients with the highest quality advice on their most critical legal and business needs, this law firm needed a solution which would enable the IT team to be more responsive to business needs and support business growth.
The time and resources required to provision systems were the key drivers to find alternatives back in 2011, and the tools under investigation lacked the intuitive user interfaces or the sophisticated workflows and reporting that vCommander offered.
In the days prior to vCommander being installed, requests for provisioning virtual machines were submitted to the IT team via email and then managed in spreadsheets. Once a request was received, the user would be sent the spreadsheet to fill out, and on its return, IT would check it, and go back to the user with any questions.
When all of the information was collected from the user, the provisioning team would then work with multiple teams to complete the provisioning process, for example to obtain the IP address, storage resources, and system patches. When all of the details were collected, the system was provisioned, and the documents were filed away.
This process not only made the request process lengthy, taking up to a week to provision a system, but when systems needed to be tracked in future, going through the filed documents was time consuming and painful.
Faster Provisioning Times
Since vCommander has been deployed, all of the information is built into the request form in the self-service portal, and the IP addresses and storage resources can be assigned using automated workflows.
Once the approvals have been provided by the various teams, the system is provisioned. The entire process now takes hours instead of days, and any required changes to the system are now requested and actioned via the portal as well.
Reporting Was the Biggest Value-Add
The benefits of the vCommander platform go beyond just the automation to the capturing and reporting of information as well. "The biggest value derived from installing vCommander was the reporting engine. We sort of took all the automated provisioning for granted," said the law firm's Senior Infrastructure Architect. "but, the fact that we can go in and report on things we didn’t even know we could report on really increased the value to the organization.”
The IT team uses the reporting engine on a daily basis to proactively track how many systems are deployed with snapshots. But the easy-to-use interface means that other business users can mine information. For example, the purchasing manager can report on how many systems are being provisioned and what operating system versions are being deployed, to ensure that they are in license compliance. Other business unit managers report on the number of systems in their department, and how that is trending over time.
Reporting is also used to drive increased performance across the infrastructure as the organization looks to new storage and tools such as memory caching and solid state arrays. As the virtual machine latency data is stored within the vCenter database, vCommander can report on it, and provide comparisons of the different technologies.
A Painless Installation
"Embotics is one of the most refreshing, customer- focused companies I have ever worked with," the Senior Infrastructure Architect continued. "The installation was painless. Within an hour everything in vCenter had been discovered, and vCommander had already started to provide useful information.
You can read the complete case study on this global law firm here.
Note: Embotics customers are deriving great benefit from using vCommander and we want to share some of their stories. Unfortunately, we are unable to use all of their names publicly due to confidentiality agreements, but hopefully this series of posts will still be useful to you.