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Oy Samlink Ab is a leading supplier of banking services, both online and on-premise, to banks, credit institutions, and investment service companies in Finland. The company provides IT solutions for all phases of financial operation. Samlink's client banks serve more than one million users in 460 branches, and over 500,000 on-line users. As an application service provider, Samlink depends on an extensive MPLS network leased from ISPs, as well as a number of VPN connections. Day-to-day operation of the network is critical to Samlink's business. Their existing toolset, based on portable protocol analyzers, couldn't give them the information they needed to efficiently manage existing applications and plan for new ones. For assistance, Samlink turned to Bemecon Oy, a Finnish solution provider specializing in systems management. After a careful audit of Samlink's IT needs, Bemecon recommended and installed a Riverbed® SteelCentral? AppResponse at Samlink's primary data center in Helsinki. SteelCentral? AppResponse almost immediately gave them a new view of their network and appliances.


IN BRIEF

Industry

  • Finance and Insurance

Challenges

  • Unable to see the network “big picture” to understand the cause of application performance degradation
  • Lack of historical network data hampered
  • Too much time spent “fire fighting,” too little time available for strategic projects

Solution

  • An AppResponse Xpert Appliance in the primary data center
  • Extensive real-time and historical reporting of over 60 critical metrics
  • Easy drill-down to problem cause and responsible party
  • Reports network and application performance metrics in terms of business impact

Benefits

  • Deep insight into network conditions and their impact on application performance
  • Improved trending and capacity planning for their MPLS network
  • A faster and more efficient network team with more time for strategic projects
  • Immediate awareness of performance degradation in critical applications

Samlink

Country-Wide Banking Services

Oy Samlink Ab is a leading supplier of banking services, both online and on-premise, to banks, credit institutions, and investment service companies in Finland. The company provides IT solutions for all phases of financial operation: banking services, such as loans, savings, and card transactions; systems for on-line and self-service banking; and value-added services, such as data storage and reporting, accounting systems, and financial management services. Samlink’s client banks serve more than one million users in 460 branches, and over 500,000 on-line users. The company employs 280 people in six offices throughout Finland.

Challenge: A Business-Critical Network

As an Application Service Provider, Samlink depends on an extensive MPLS network leased from ISPs, as well as a number of VPN connections. Day-to-day operation of the network is, of course, critical to Samlink’s business, but the company’s competitive position depends on the ability to roll out new applications in response to customer demand. Their existing toolset, based on portable protocol analyzers, couldn’t give them the information they needed to efficiently manage existing applications and plan for new ones.

“The analyzers were never in the right place at the right time,” says Jussi Rãsãnen, System Specialist-Network at Oy Samlink Ab. “We needed a solution that was on the job 24-by- 7, and that could give us not only real-time information about application slowdowns, but historical information for capacity planning and new application rollouts.

Solution:Network Insight, End-to-End

For assistance, Samlink turned to Bemecon Oy, a Finnish solution provider specializing in systems management. After a careful audit of Samlink’s IT needs, Bemecon recommended and installed a Riverbed® AppResponse Xpert® Appliance at Samlink’s primary data center in Helsinki.

“AppResponse Xpert almost immediately gave us a new view of our network and applications,” says Jussi. “We could see application slowdowns anywhere on our network, and monitor network load changes and track their cause. And since it can monitor all our traffic from a single point, we don’t have to worry about being in the right place at the right time: the data we need to solve a problem is always waiting for us.”

The AppResponse Xpert appliance was put to work immediately for one of the IT team’s primary needs: monitoring the MPLS network. “We use [AppResponse Xpert] to investigate trends in our MPLS usage,” comments Jussi, “and discern who is using our capacity, and for what.”

He also notes how useful the historical information supplied by the appliance is for capacity planning. “We can now much more accurately judge whether or not to add bandwidth in preparation for a new application rollout.”

Benefits: Proactive, Not Reactive

Mr. Râsânen also reports a notable improvement in his team’s troubleshooting capabilities. “The [AppResponse Xpert] appliance has given us a new way to look at the overall condition of the network and how that affects important applications. We can often see signs of trouble before they become serious enough to affect our users.”

Equally important is the rapidity with which the team can respond to serious issues. “We know who the problem is affecting, and how important it is to our business, and we spend less time troubleshooting and more time on strategic projects like new application rollouts.”

Asked to sum up the AppResponse Xpert benefits to his team, Jussi says: “[AppResponse Xpert] is the most comprehensive yet easy-to-use application performance management tool we have seen. Equally important is its rapid time to value, which derives from its ability to greatly accelerate problem- solving, and reduce the number of IT personnel who need to be involved.”

Bemecon

Bemecon, a leading Finnish solutions provider, brings more than 100 years of collective IT experience to its client engagements, both in Finland and internationally. The company offers comprehensive services in the field of IT Systems Management, combining consulting, product sales, and training to deliver complete solutions that match customer needs.

“[AppResponse Xpert] is the most comprehensive yet easy-to-use application performance management tool we have seen. Equally important is its rapid time to value, which derives from its ability to greatly accelerate problem-solving, and reduce the number of IT personnel we who need to be involved."

“[AppResponse Xpert’s] ease of deployment and extremely rapid return on investment faster than any other product we’ve worked with—make it a must-have tool not only for our customers, but for our consultants. The comprehensive nature of the data enables us to vividly demonstrate the need, not only for “[AppResponse Xpert], but for other products, in business-oriented terms that customers understand.”

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