CareerBuilder is a global, end-to-end human capital solutions company focused on helping employers find, hire and manage great talent. Combining advertising, software and services, in over 60 markets worldwide, CareerBuilder needed to move away from manual provisioning of virtual machines to support their growing needs.
As CareerBuilder moved from a website for job candidates to post resumes and search for new opportunities to a software-as-a-service company catering for the lifecycle of a candidate, including job postings, applicant tracking, screening, and human capital management, the requirements of the development teams tasked with creating the software products were beginning to stretch the resources of the IT teams.
"The developer used to submit a ticket and we deployed the server manually "explained Ali Shahzad IT Manager for CareerBuilder" but it's not only about deploying a single server, that's the easiest part. There is a workflow; the server needs to be added to the monitoring and backup systems, antivirus software needs to be installed, and all of these processes were manual before vCommander." A typical deployment took up to two days to deploy, and the development teams required increasingly faster provisioning. It was clear that the manual processes were not going to scale, and as a result, Shahzad started the search for an automation orchestration tool. "With Amazon cloud also on our road map we needed to ensure that the tool we chose could support multiple clouds and not lock us in to one."
With 2,500 virtual machines split between on-prem and the cloud, the end-users don't need to know where their systems are being placed.
"That's one of the biggest benefits." Said Johan Munoz, Sr.Infrastructure Engineer at the company, "to the developers, they're deploying a virtual machine. Our disaster recovery environment is on-prem and in the cloud, so if they want to deploy to the cloud, they have the same console as if it was on-prem. There's no requirement for me to train users for different environments. There is no pain for the user, that's the beauty."
With multiple web properties and locations, the IT Team makes use of a service catalog of between 10 and 15 systems along with the tagging capabilities of vCommander to automatically name the systems based on location, and if they are production web systems, disaster recovery servers, or back-end applications servers. The user then selects the type of system they require, and it gets placed into the correct datacenter.
Once the deployed systems are no longer required, the users can decommission them through vCommander, a process which calls a workflow to remove the system not only from the active directory, but also from all the other systems that it was using, such as monitoring, anti-virus, and the IT ticketing system for audit purposes. "That's the best part about it," continued Shahzad, "not only does it delete an object, it actually removes it from all the other systems. Before we had to do a quarterly audit and clean up."
Recently the team migrated 100 servers from Microsoft Windows Server 2008 to Windows Server 2012 R2, a task that Shahzad said would have taken at least three weeks under the old system, but took less than a day with vCommander.
The platform has provided the team at CareerBuilder several benefits over the manual process that existed previously within IT for deploying and tracking virtual machines. It has also provided the end-users with a high degree of autonomy. "The user can do whatever they need to with the systems, we don't even have to interfere." said Munoz, "we just need to make sure we have enough capacity for them to deploy, pretty much that's about it."
"They are really allowed to do everything themselves from power cycling the machines to console access via RDP." concluded Shahzad, "The workflows are the biggest thing, allowing the users to go in and just provision for themselves, that was a huge win for us."
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