- Deployed hyperconverged infrastructure to consolidate siloed environments, saving 25 percent compared to traditional multi-tiered solution.
- Reduced footprint helps reduce power and cooling expenses by 20 percent.
- Centralized network management on a single dashboard supports automated processes to save IT time and help improve productivity.
Nutanix Enterprise Cloud Platform
Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada) is one of the largest national accounting organizations in the world and is a respected voice in the business, government, education and non-profit sectors. To keep pace with fast-changing technology, the organization deployed a hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) solution based on Nutanix Enterprise Cloud. “Nutanix enables us to provide our end users with modern tools and applications, while simplifying our data center environment. It helps us enhance server performance to drive business change, while providing additional capacity, easier maintenance, and other back-end benefits that end users might not see. Nutanix shows that IT is really driving digital transformation,” said Florian Puthod, Engineering Manager, CPA Canada.
Nutanix enables us to provide our end users with modern tools and applications, while simplifying our data center environment. It helps us enhance server performance to drive business change, while providing additional capacity, easier maintenance, and other back-end benefits that end users might not see. Nutanix shows that IT is really driving digital transformationFlorian Puthod, Engineering Manager, CPA Canada
CPA Canada represents Canadian accounting professionals throughout the country. Working closely with domestic and global organizations, it sustains more than 210,000 members and is committed to developing leading edge thought-leadership, research, guidance and educational programs to ensure its members are equipped to drive success and shape the future.
To support its operations, CPA Canada relies on its IT team. “Our group takes care of all the infrastructure that runs all the systems for CPA Canada, both on premises and online,” said Florian Puthod, Engineering Manager, CPA Canada. “Our infrastructure keeps staff and their solutions connected at our headquarters, as well as across the WAN and our branch offices. It supports a variety of applications, including finance, HR, CRM applications, along with file services and other supporting services.”
CPA Canada is continually evolving its infrastructure as part of a strategic plan. To make its IT processes as efficient as possible, and provide a superior experience for end users, the organization explored consolidating and migrating its sites to a hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI).
Working closely with its partner Zycom Technology (Zycom), CPA Canada chose the Nutanix Enterprise Cloud Platform. Built on the industry’s leading HCI technology, it integrates compute, storage, virtualization and networking in a full-stack solution that runs nearly any application. “We were especially focused on the resiliency and scalability of the solution, which were strong points for Nutanix,” said Puthod. “We also liked its ability to smoothly integrate with our diverse environment. We still have a heavy footprint on premises to run our applications. In the last few years, we have increasingly run cloud, AWS, Azure, as well as SaaS applications and services.”
Zycom deployed the solution at CPA Canada’s head office in Toronto, as well as regional sites including Ottawa, Montreal and Burnaby. Nutanix enabled the organization to consolidate and upgrade its compute environment, and enhance storage capacity—while reducing its hardware footprint. “Thanks to the platform deployment was very quick,” said Puthod. “We had new nodes up and ready within about a half day for Toronto and remote offices.” The project time saved in deployment, allowed for an aggressive move to HCI.
With Nutanix Prism, Puthod and his team can easily gain insight into the state of their environment, and take advantage of tools and automation to rapidly provision VMs and other components. “Prism Central was a catalyst in the design for CPA Canada, allowing them to aggressively move forward with their Digital Transformation strategy and easily manage their on-premise workloads across Canada from a single management plane”, said Terry Buchanan, vice president technology & general manager at Zycom.
“The ability to mix different node configurations within the same cluster enabled CPA Canada to provision resource capacity to improve their total cost of ownership” added Buchanan. CPA Canada electing to mix NX-6000 and NX-8000 nodes for Toronto and NX-1000 nodes for regional sites.
CPA Canada anticipated that its Nutanix solution would deliver a rapid return on investment, and the new platform has delivered. The organization’s reduced infrastructure footprint is already paying off big dividends, reducing power and cooling costs by approximately 20 percent. “As we were looking at deployment options, we calculated in advance the cost of replacing our compute, storage, and other components,” said Puthod. “The hyperconverged Nutanix platform saves us about 25 percent compared to a traditional multi-tiered infrastructure.”
Migrating to an HCI also helps the firm streamline management tasks—and help deliver the best possible performance for a variety of workloads, including CRM, Business Intelligence (BI), and Web applications. “It seems that we spend less time managing our platforms, but the real benefits come when it is time to upgrade,” said Puthod. “In the past, we would not necessarily upgrade different tiers, such as compute and storage arrays behind the full infrastructure. However, with Nutanix, we can be sure that the environment is always up to date, because performing upgrades is so easy.”
In the near future, CPA Canada plans to take advantage of powerful features such as one-click automated updates for its existing VMWare vSphere ESXi, to save its IT team even more time.
With its flexible Nutanix solution in place, CPA Canada is already exploring additional products and features that it can use to help IT gain further data efficiencies. The organization is also evaluating Nutanix Calm to support application automation and lifecycle management that’s natively integrated into the platform. “We are looking at all the possible ways to streamline our processes and systems, and automate provisioning,” said Puthod.