TotalTrax, Inc

TotalTrax, Inc. is a leading provider of real-time vehicle, driver, and inventory tracking technologies for manufacturing and warehouse operations. Combining patented hardware, software, reporting, along with business intelligence tools, TotalTrax transforms traditional fork trucks into “Smart Trucks” that track vehicle usage, maintenance, load, and location by leveraging the IoT. Eager to scale their business, TotalTrax couldn’t get the support they needed from their current AWS partner. TotalTrax’s Account Manager at AWS recommended a Well-Architected Review (WAR) from another AWS Premier Consulting Partner, Innovative Solutions, that he was confident was a good fit.

A Well-Architected Review is an architectural assessment based upon the AWS Well-Architected Framework to assist in creating a more secure, high-performing, resilient and efficient infrastructure.

“Innovative Solutions is an AWS Premier Consulting Partner, and I would highly recommend them to my customers and colleagues.” – Ryan Quigley, Account Manager at AWS

Once the WAR had been conducted, it became readily apparent that there were serious deficiencies in how their infrastructure was set up. For one thing, security was discovered to be seriously lacking. The Innovative team recommended a complete outline and plan to avoid major security breaches. That plan included automatic updates with Systems Manager, leveraging IAM Access Manager, and implementing a variety of the AWS Managed security offerings that would handle authorization, authentication, protected stores, visibility, and enforcement of TotalTrax AWS environment. Security was not the only area that was examined. Innovative took a good hard look at how best to optimize their cloud costs, suggesting utilizing a Cloud Management Platform (CMP) that would provide more than 550 best practice checks, cash flow protection, and compliance framework checks.

“Going through the project we identified some very large gaps in cost optimization, security, and just overall architecture of the environment.” – Jonathan Prutzman, Account Executive at Innovative Solutions

The Partner Solution

Once the management team at TotalTrax were presented with the WAR findings and recommendations, they came to the conclusion that they just were not satisfied with their current partner. Having Innovative Solutions handle the complete remediation seemed like a logical next step.

As the work Innovative was doing quickly progressed, the differences in style and responsiveness between the former partner and Innovative became obvious to the TotalTrax team. First off, Innovative was quick to answer questions or render support, totally the opposite of their former partner. Often enough they would be agonizingly slow to respond to support requests and questions, making the TotalTrax team feel that they were trapped in a long-term contract with a partner that didn’t care. Aside from that, they insisted on controlling much of the environment that they had built, limiting what TotalTrax could do within their own AWS environment. Finally, it became too frictional for the relationship to continue.

“With our previous provider, every three months or so we would have a totally different team that would support us. We didn’t know them, and they certainly didn’t know us.” – Thelma Marshall, VP of Operations at TotalTrax

It didn’t take long for TotalTrax’s leadership to conclude that Innovative Solutions was a good fit. Innovative offered a wide range of services under their Managed Cloud Services (MCS) offering that would enable TotalTrax to go in the direction they wanted as a business. They were responsive to their immediate needs and, with a deep bench of AWS experts, could help them achieve future business goals. Regardless of the initial cost of waiting out the long-term contract they were locked into, TotalTrax decided to give Innovative the go-ahead to create a totally new AWS environment. Innovative moved to put a dedicated team in place connecting all the players at TotalTrax on Slack, so communication became very clear and easy for everyone involved.

“TotalTrax has clear open channels of communications with all of us at Innovative. An example of this is, TotalTrax was running into Amazon EKS issues, and we were able to pull in 3 or 4 resources on the fly, and got it resolved that same day. They didn’t have to fill out a support ticket and wait for us to respond, they were able to reach out directly to me and we took over from there. Being this open makes us feel like part of their team, and not just a vendor.” – Eli Hills, Account Manager at Innovative Solutions

Hitting virtually every deadline they committed to, Innovative Solutions was then tasked with migrating all their remaining on-premises workloads to their new AWS environment, including their ERP system.

The Results and Benefits

TotalTrax now has a modern AWS environment that addresses security and utilizes a cloud management platform to manage costs efficiently. Savings are projected to be an eyebrow raising 75% of previous costs. Through Innovative’s MCS, TotalTrax has scalability, performance and reliability and a dedicated support team of AWS experts.

The benefits to TotalTrax of working with Innovative Solutions:

  • Gaining total control over their AWS environment
  • Achieving a much higher level of support, with no long-term contracts
  • A dedicated team that truly cares about their business
  • Continuous training and consulting to maintain best practices
  • Proactive cost optimization tactics, including purchasing reserve instances (pre-buying AWS services in bulk representing a 30% savings)
Why Do It Alone

If you’re thinking about building your company’s future in the AWS cloud, let us help you build, manage and optimize your cloud infrastructure. Contact us today to begin a Well-Architected Review (www.innovativewar.com) or to talk about our Managed Cloud Services (www.innovativesol.com/mcs). We use a combination of the right people and automation to proactively manage your cloud environment, so you don’t have to.

Hype Equity

Hype Equity is a start-up technology company based in Rochester, NY that is making waves in the FinTech industry. By crowdsourcing trends on social media and leveraging machine learning to process the mountain of data coming in, Hype Equity can provide important actionable information to investors in real time. Deciding from the beginning that they needed to go completely serverless with AWS. They also recognized that speed to market was essential and that to get there they needed help.

They decided to focus on their core competencies of product innovation, and enlist the help of a managed service provider (MSP) to manage the operation and structure of their AWS environment. At the top of their list was Innovative Solutions.

“Working with Innovative I have a high confidence level. They have a process, structure and for them to execute and deliver services that I don’t have to manage, it frees me up to focus on improving our product. I think of Innovative Solutions more as an extension of our team than a vendor.”     – Travis Rehl, Founder, Hype Equity

Hype Equity’s Challenge

As a casual investor, Travis Rehl, one of the founders of Hype Equity, came up with an idea for an application. What if you could gather all the comments being made online, and break it all down into actionable intelligence about publicly traded equities? Crowdsourcing social media commentary of stocks on what is hot and what is not, could be valuable, and could be a business. He was right. Hype Equity enables its customers to “over hear” the rumors, whispers and social trends related to publicly traded companies. These trends can help identify potential stock price movements before they happen and before anyone else. Leveraging Machine Learning, Travis and his two other partners developed a working proto-type that measures social media in real time. Together they spun up an application with a Python code base. The entire backend of the application is built on AWS Lambda, the database is in Amazon DynamoDB, the app is hosted on AWS S3, and the frontend was built on React.

As more and more people heard about the service, subscriber numbers grew. Soon the volume of business overwhelmed the platform and a down time event took them offline for almost two full days. That’s when they realized they needed to change things.

“If you’re going to use AWS, at some point, you’re going to need help. There’s just too many options to go at it alone. For a startup, the biggest roadblock is scaling, there’s too much to do alone.”     – Chris Mott, Cloud Services Account Manager at Innovative

AWS offers a myriad of cloud based tools for businesses of any size. However, it can be daunting trying to master them without the proper skill set or the time to invest in their mastery. Hype Equity was concerned that their momentum forward would lose steam if they had to redirect their focus to operation maintenance and structure of their platform.

The Partner Solution

Hype Equity then looked for a partner who could leverage the AWS ecosystem. That is when they had a conversation with Innovative Solutions. Nationally recognized as a top AWS Premier Consulting Partner for SMBs and Startups, Innovative had the skills to keep Hype Equity’s momentum going, by taking on the operational part of the business.

Innovative Solutions has been able to lower operational costs, minimize downtime and helped Hype Equity operate more efficiently and securely. By leveraging Innovative’s Managed Cloud Services (MCS), Hype Equity has been able to utilize the right tools to fit their needs. Integrated into MCS are tools like CloudCheckr, which has helped Hype Equity lower AWS costs, or New Relic which manages and remediates projected service interruptions and degradations. Scheduled back ups and other Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity (DR/BC) related tasks are handled by Skeddly, and S3 security by Cloud Storage Security. The certified experts at Innovative Solutions have been able to free the team at Hype Equity from managing the day to day of operations, security and infrastructure maintenance and let them get on with building their business.

Results and Benefits

Since partnering with Innovative Solutions, Hype Equity has been able to scale at an incredible rate. Bringing on new clients everyday, from retail investors and AlgoTraders to Independent Software Vendors (ISV) and Financial Providers, exceeding all their expectations on speed and scale. Hype Equity has been able to grow quickly, become operationally efficient, highly resilient, while at the same time optimizing costs. Travis says that Innovative Solutions has increased the company’s momentum by 20% by being released from the operational & structural management of their application to focus on innovating their product. On the horizon for Hype Equity, listening on Crypto Currency.

“After a conversation with our leadership team, it was obvious that Innovative Solutions was the direction we needed to go. They have a process, structure, and they execute and deliver services (that I don’t have to manage), freeing me up to focus on improving our product. I think of Innovative more as an extension of our team than a vendor. It’s been a match made in heaven.”     – Travis Rehl, Founder, Hype Equity

Why Do It Alone?

With Innovative Solutions Managed Cloud Services, you don’t have to be the expert in the AWS universe. There are so many tools, each of them requires a level of expertise that few have the time to master. Time a start-up or small business can’t afford to take, and with one misstep, game over. Speed to market and speed to scale are what prevail in today’s tech world. Let Innovative Solutions be that expert with its Managed Cloud Services to maximize AWS to your company’s fullest potential.

Learn more on how Innovative Solutions can help you build, manage and optimize your cloud infrastructure with Innovative Managed Cloud Services.

Check out our video on Hype Equity

Humanex Ventures

Humanex Ventures is a human resource consulting company based in Lincoln, Nebraska that helps businesses architect excellence in talent, culture, and teams. Having a specialized focus in education, athletics, and business & community, Humanex marries technology and research to help organizations across the country master their people needs.

The Challenge

Humanex served their partners through a Java-based software platform. They had two main drivers to move to the cloud:

>  Their entire technology stack was approaching support end of life
>  They did not have the source code of their current software solution

With end of support upon them, Humanex was operating on a system that lacked redundancy, scalability, and reliability. Also, with no source code, further support and enhancements were costly and time-consuming, taking their technical staff away from impactful work for their customers. With the future in mind, Humanex knew it was time to move to the cloud: specifically, AWS.

The Solution

Our engagement started with a two-day discovery session at Humanex’s headquarters in Nebraska. During this session we performed a deep dive to understand their current application’s capabilities, documented their systems, and educated their staff on what their feature set could look like in AWS. Virtual sessions continued post-workshop to prioritize the features and design of their new application. Finally, we met once more at our home office in Rochester, NY to solidify the solution.

After months of development, our teams were able to create an entirely new cloud-native platform living in AWS. Humanex’s code deployment was built with a modern DevOps framework using AWS CodeCommit, AWS CodePipeline, AWS CodeBuild, AWS CloudFormation, and the AWS Serverless Application Model (SAM). Their single-page application is now served up through Amazon CloudFront and hosted in S3 for performance and efficiency. Calls into their API are served up by Amazon API Gateway and AWS Lambda, and backend asynchronous processes utilize Amazon Simple Queue Service (SQS) and Amazon Simple Notification Service (SNS), all for greater efficiency. Their database leverages Amazon Aurora Serverless, and the entire application possesses easy monitoring and visibility through Amazon CloudWatch and AWS X-Ray performance metrics. Lastly, each environment is contained within its own Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) for heightened security.

The Results

Through our partnership, Humanex now has a completely rejuvenated, agile application powered by AWS. Their solution exemplifies the pillars of AWS’ Well-Architected Framework: secure, high performing, operationally efficient, resilient, and cost optimized. They have a highly scalable, cost effective solution that they can continue to build upon with significantly lower operational overhead. This lowered overhead reduces time to market, helping Humanex to stay ahead of their competition. With serverless computing as the backbone to their application, infrastructure management is simplified and streamlined so Humanex’s technical team can focus on implementing features that serve their customers.

Check out our video on Humanex Ventures

Roji Health Intelligence

Roji Health Intelligence is a small technology company based in Chicago, IL that targets the healthcare industry. Their software platform helps providers see their quality and costs in a unique way, which allows patients to receive the right care at the right time. Healthcare organizations are realigning services and operations to deliver Value-Based Care. To get there, providers need robust information about cost and outcomes to make wise strategic and financial decisions. Roji creates pioneering, technology-based solutions and services for these organizations to achieve just that. They help health care systems, ACOs, medical groups, and health systems to grow and prosper with ACOs, Direct Contracting, Primary Care First and other Medicare and commercial Value-Based Care models.

The Challenge

Roji had an opportunity to transform their business by moving to the cloud. They initially built their environment using on-premise physical servers. Although they were able to serve the majority of their customer base, their business was growing at a rapid rate, and they needed the ability to scale quickly, efficiently, and securely in the cloud. Security was a major focus for Roji, as they needed to protect their patient data and meet HIPPA compliance standards. In addition to scalability and security, Roji saw the potential costly capital expenditures on the horizon if they continued to use their on-premise IT infrastructure. Most of their physical servers and equipment were going end of life, and would have required a large financial investment to purchase newer pieces of hardware in addition to the migration of their workloads to the new hardware.

The Solution

After months of preparation and planning, we were able to help Roji through their migration and utilize the power of the cloud. The engagement started with a Migration Readiness Assessment, where we utilized a migration tool to crawl the customer’s current on-premise environment and create a total cost of ownership (TCO) for their future cloud costs. Once validated, our team started planning for Roji’s full migration. The migration was made seamless with the help from CloudEndure, a highly-automated tool that simplifies, expedites, and reduces the cost of migrating applications to AWS Cloud. With CloudEndure, our team was able to set up agents and cutover to the customer’s cloud environment in an instant. We performed a domain health audit on the customers domain controllers and migrated them over to their AWS environment as well. After the migration was complete, our team provided extended support to the Roji team to ensure the migration and handoff was as smooth as possible for their technical team and their customers.

The Result

With a helping hand from our Migration team, Roji is now set up for success within AWS. They moved from an on-prem solution that could not scale to their business needs to a cohesive cloud solution that will help them deliver a greater experience to their customers. Large capital expenditures and downtime are worries of the past with pay-as-you-go compute resources spread across multiple availability zones. Roji can effortlessly protect their customer data through their Virtual Private Cloud (VPC), meet HIPAA compliance requirements, and have the ability to meet other compliance standards like HITRUST, that will attract more customers.

Check out our video on Roji Health Intelligence

myDigitalOffice

myDigitalOffice is a technology company that’s disrupting the hospitality industry with their #1 rated hotel accounting and finance software. Their modern information management software, allows customers to visualize their data and create action from it. To continue their innovation, they needed to go all in on the Cloud and migrate their entire infrastructure to their new 2.0 platform, built on AWS.

The Challenge

myDigitalOffice was facing two major issues that needed to be resolved immediately. The first issue was that they were overspending by being extremely over provisioned. The second issue was that they were on a strict timeline to migrate their on-premises servers out of the IBM datacenter before it closed permanently. With deadlines looming, they knew they needed to find a way to migrate quickly and reduce their spend. They already had part of their infrastructure in AWS but did not feel they had the resources to successfully migrate and support any additional workloads in the Cloud. That’s when they turned to Innovative.

The Solution

myDigitalOffice’s software enables their customers to organize information in meaningful and actionable snapshots with instant reporting across properties and systems. We stepped in and quickly understood myDigitalOffice’s situation and built a plan that will meet all their immediate needs and set them up for future growth. The first step of this engagement was to analyze and document their current on-premises infrastructure within IBM. The deliverable was a Migration Readiness Assessment (MRA) for their remaining workloads. With the MRA complete, we utilized CloudEndure to migrate everything to their existing account on AWS. This AWS offering provided a low cost, scalable, and highly reliable infrastructure platform that helped manage variable costs and replace high upfront infrastructure investments. It allowed us to create a copy of their existing servers without the need to rebuild these instances within AWS.

Due to the hospitality industry being decimated by COVID-19, myDigitalOffice was hesitant to come up with the upfront costs typically associated with migrations. We were able to identify an AWS funding program that drastically reduce their investment, allowing them to stay under their operating budget.

The Result

Utilizing CloudEndure, we were able to complete the migration project within the deadline set by their IBM Datacenter. With myDigitalOffice now being a cloud-first company, they can easily right size their entire infrastructure to the correct specifications without the need to over provision for the future, saving them thousands of dollars a year. It also allows them to achieve increased reliability and scalability without the large upfront cost.

Quarem

Quarem’s industry leading lease management software comes from technology and people working together.

The Challenge

Quarem’s web application architecture included a front-end web server which was directly accessible over the Internet. Due to this being a single webserver, they were leaving a business-critical application open to potential issues. The fact that the application was on a single web server, the likelihood for downtime, due to a server issue, was very high. The server environment was not easily scalable to meeting the growing business needs. There was also a possibility that the server could have been over-exposed through configuration mistakes. For all of these reasons, Quarem knew it needed a change.

The Solution

Quarem, with the help of AWS and Innovative Solutions, created an EC2 Auto-Scaling Group for the webserver and launched at least two servers in multiple availability zones. An Application Load Balancer was set up to direct traffic to the Auto-Scaling Group and to terminate SSL traffic. Quarem migrated their DNS to Route53, to be able to send their traffic to the load balancer in the zone apex record. With these changes, Quarem was able to build a more secure and scalable environment both internally and externally for their customers

Quality in Real Time (QIRT)

For a business that serves the health care market, like QIRT, scale, reliability, and compliance all matter.

The Challenge

QIRT’s homegrown business application system had worked well for years. But by 2012, it could no longer meet all the needs of their fast-expanding enterprise. As the company grew and the industry they served was evolving, they began to struggle to expand in the directions they needed for customers.

  • Performance and reliability issues cropped
  • Compliance requirements were increasing
  • User volume was exploding year over year
  • Can’t keep up with changing business needs
The Solution

Innovative Solutions reviewed QIRT’s existing system to determine the right direction to migrate toward as they evolved into a full-fledged Quality Cycle Management organization. The IS team came back with a bold recommendation: for QIRT to start from scratch, rewriting every piece of their application. It would be the most ambitious development project QIRT had ever considered, and one that would add scalability, flexibility, and competitive advantages to their core offering. Innovative went on to create a custom SaaS, QIRT Advantage, built on AWS so that it could serve many different types of users. AWS hosting means every end user can communicate securely across the system in an environment that meets rigorous requirements such as PHI, HIPPA compliance and the SOC2 certification. QIRT Advantage is easy for professionals in these varied fields to adapt to. Cloud-based, mobile access across devices also gives QIRT the freedom to hire the best talent, no matter where they live. And AWS services bring it all together

StatSocial

StatSocial decreased their spend and increased their innovation with Amazon EC2

The Challenge

StatSocial’s systems were hosted in a managed datacenter, with significant cost associated with running their infrastructure. Additionally, StatSocial utilized horizontally scaling databases, Cassandra and Clustrix, which require multiple servers with high performance. Expansion of these databases required a ticket to the managed datacenter, and visibility into overall server metrics was not directly available to StatSocial.

The Solution

StatSocial migrated their entire infrastructure from their managed datacenter environment to Amazon Web Services (AWS). The company runs their custom built data analytics workloads on EC2, and for extremely performant databases are utilizing EC2 instances with attached NVME volumes for maximum IOPS at a low cost. StatSocial also has direct alarms and dashboards to monitor server performance and be alerted when there are issues within the system.

Monroe Wheelchair

How Monroe Wheelchair used AWS to protect their business from outages and direct resources more efficiently.

For Monroe Wheelchair, 2017 turned out to be a pivotal year for their IT infrastructure. When the year began, they were facing end-of-life hardware, gaps in their systems from backup to security, a mountain of office paperwork, and vulnerabilities they hadn’t yet imagined. By the end of the year, they had an AWS-based solution that included Amazon WorkSpaces and the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) that helped them protect their business from outages, lost productivity from unexpected downtime, costly over-provisioned infrastructure, and service disruptions that cut into their revenue.

The Challenge

A business specializing in creating better lives for people with disabilities, Monroe Wheelchair of Rochester, N.Y., provides complex rehab and mobility solutions across New York State. Much of the company’s business centers on rehabilitation, so their team is frequently on the road providing critical maintenance for wheelchairs and other equipment people rely on. By the end of 2016, the company realized they’d outgrown the capabilities of their longtime IT service provider. They found they needed more bandwidth and strategic thinking for IT and turned to Innovative Solutions in early 2017.

Soon after the relationship with Innovative began, the issue of Business Continuity became an urgent consideration when a Monroe Wheelchair main office lost power during windstorm, knocking them offline for days. All of their servers were in their Rochester headquarters and they couldn’t use their computers or phones, so their other locations couldn’t operate either. The cost was steep: severe service disruptions, employee downtime, and lost revenue.

It became clear that Monroe Wheelchair’s on-premises infrastructure was end-of-life and no longer supported. It could not meet the recovery time objective (RTO) and recovery point objective (RPO) expectations of Monroe Wheelchair. They needed a way for users across the organization to have reliable access to their IT infrastructure and sensitive PHI data, even in the case of a site failure. So, while we were preparing to recommend a solution to replace the customer’s hardware as it neared its end of life and losing its warranty, our team also made Business Continuity a priority to help the company mitigate the risk of power loss.

The Solution

After looking over the options and the multi-year cost-of-ownership models the Innovative team put together, Monroe Wheelchair quickly knew the direction that was right for them, and that solution was built on Amazon Web Services (AWS), a cloud-based service that would enable a fully managed, secure Desktop-as-a-Service solution. With AWS, the company would have a virtual, cloud-based environment so their users could access documents, applications, and resources—anywhere, anytime. Two key components from AWS came into play:

Amazon WorkSpaces
This Desktop-as-a-Service program lets users connect to their employer’s entire IT infrastructure from any computer with a browser, because the hardware, storage, and memory are all hosted in the cloud. It offers users the secure mobility of working from anywhere, decreased need for troubleshooting, and rapid deployment.

Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2)
This AWS cloud-native server enables Monroe Wheelchair to scale up or scale in the most cost-effective way. For instance, if they don’t need server capacity and storage in one area, they can reduce their usage, while scaling up to use software they’re implementing in another area. They’re never over-provisioned, which means they’re never have to pay for services they don’t use.

Since Monroe Wheelchair migrated their entire infrastructure to Amazon Web Services (AWS), the company runs its major line of business applications in EC2 and the users’ desktops in Amazon WorkSpaces. Users are able to work remotely without a dependency on any of their offices or weather. Their environment is backed up automatically. By using AWS, Monroe Wheelchair is able to redeploy the infrastructure to another region in the case of a major failure.

Canandaigua Medical Group

Canandaigua Medical Group migrates entire infrastructure to AWS using Server Migration Service (SMS).

The Challenge

Canandaigua Medical Group was acquired by Thompson Health. With this acquisition came a new building slated to open in early 2019, and their servers were approaching the end of their life. Since the acquisition, the technology systems were being merged, but there was a need to keep the legacy workloads around for a little bit longer. Canandaigua Medical Group and Thompson Health wanted to avoid buying equipment that would not be used for its full lifecycle.

The Solution

Canandaigua Medical Group migrated their entire infrastructure to Amazon Web Services (AWS). The company now runs their legacy systems in EC2 and the users’ desktops in Amazon WorkSpaces. The servers were migrated before their deadline using Server Migration Service. By using AWS, Canandaigua Medical Group is able to pay just for what they use and can scale up or down, depending on business needs

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