FNCB Bank is rapidly building innovative digital services to help attract new clients—but its legacy IT infrastructure was fast approaching capacity. Through working with Lenovo and Nutanix, the bank deployed a high-performance, future-ready hyperconverged infrastructure, creating a solid foundation for next-generation digital banking services.
Compared to other vendors we’ve engaged in the past, working with Lenovo and Nutanix feels like a true partnership.– Ron Honick, Senior VP, Operations and Technology Services Officer, FNCB Bank
FNCB Bank’s digital channel is a key enabler of their long-term growth strategy, but the bank’s aging legacy IT infrastructure threatened to stand in the way of its ambitious timetable for launching new services. To solve the challenge, FNCB Bank moved to a future-ready hyperconverged infrastructure from Lenovo and Nutanix—delivering the performance, scalability and flexibility for service innovation.
- Overcome the stagnation caused by aging IT infrastructure by implementing a future-ready hyperconverged infrastructure that enables innovation and high-quality performance.
Nutanix Cloud Platform with AHV Hypervisor
Hardware & Services:
- Lenovo ThinkAgile HX3520-G Appliance
- Lenovo Premier Support
- Citrix XenDesktop
- Mission Critical Applications
Founded in 1910 in Dunmore, Pennsylvania, FNCB Bank is an independent community bank, helping people, businesses and investors reach their financial goals. Serving personal and business banking needs across Northeastern Pennsylvania, FNCB Bank delivers a comprehensive range of mobile, online and in-branch products and services.
With a lean IT team, FNCB Bank wanted to find a platform that would empower its people to focus on value-added service development rather than repetitive management and maintenance tasks.
Walt Jugiewicz, AVP, Systems & Desktop Services Manager at FNCB Bank, adds: “We’re a team of only four people, and it was extremely important to find a solution that would enable us to keep our headcount flat. At the same time, we were keen to leverage automation to help reduce our administration workloads and free up more time to deliver new capabilities for the business.
“Finally, we wanted to empower our people to work more effectively by ensuring they had all the tools they needed at their fingertips—and we decided to enhance our laptop and desktops by deploying a new virtual desktop infrastructure [VDI].”
FNCB Bank is targeting long-term business growth and continues to add new services to help attract new clients and nurture their loyalty. The digital channel plays a crucial role in the bank’s operations—both as the foundation for its core banking applications and as an important touchpoint for customer engagement.
Ron Honick, Senior VP, Operations and Technology Services Officer at FNCB Bank, explains: “We have a number of key transformation initiatives underway across the business, extending from our back office through to our front-line services. To achieve these objectives, we knew from the start that data-driven systems would be essential.”
Kirk Borchert, VP, Technology Services Officer at FNCB Bank, continues: “As our transformation program gained pace, we needed to respond with greater agility to deliver new services for the business. Our existing infrastructure was approaching end-of-life, and we began the search for a new IT platform to help us realize our goals.”
THE NUTANIX SOLUTION
After first considering solutions based on a traditional three-tier architecture, FNCB Bank decided to make the switch to a cutting-edge hyperconverged infrastructure platform. The bank selected a high-performance solution based on 12 Lenovo ThinkAgile HX3520-G appliances virtualized with Nutanix AHV.
“The more we learned about hyperconverged infrastructure, the more convinced we became that it was the perfect fit for FNCB Bank,” recalls Borchert. “Meeting with the team at the Lenovo Executive Briefing Center in Raleigh reinforced our convictions. It was clear that the Lenovo team were experts in hyperconverged infrastructure, and they really took the time to understand our requirements and discuss the design of the solution with us in depth.”
Honick adds: “Of all the hyperconverged infrastructure vendors we considered, we were most impressed by the close relationship between Nutanix and Lenovo. Because the Lenovo ThinkAgile HX platform was designed in collaboration with Nutanix, we knew that the two solutions would be highly compatible.”
Sprinting Ahead of Schedule
Working together with Lenovo Professional Services, FNCB Bank deployed its new infrastructure as a high-availability cluster at its on-premises data center, with continuous data replication to a secondary environment for disaster recovery. Using the Nutanix Move tool, the bank seamlessly migrated its applications and data from the legacy environment to the new Lenovo ThinkAgile HX platform.
“Our Lenovo project manager was incredible and connected us with all the resources we needed to make sure the work proceeded on time,” comments Jugiewicz. “In my 22 years in IT, this was by far the best implementation team I’ve worked with. Even through the project was taking place around the busy Christmas holiday season, Lenovo pulled out all the stops to avoid delays—and we actually went live a whole week ahead of schedule.”
Today, FNCB Bank runs many of its mission-critical applications and data services on the Lenovo ThinkAgile HX platform. These systems include a new VDI for the bank’s back-office and in-branch staff, powered by Citrix XenDesktop. The Nvidia GPUs in the appliance help to accelerate the VDI experience.
Honick comments: “One of the key drivers for moving to a hyperconverged infrastructure was the agility and flexibility to respond to new requirements from the business. When we embarked on our project, we had no idea that the COVID-19 crisis was about to spread around the world, but our new capabilities made all the difference at an absolutely critical time.”
He continues: “We had previously decided to over-size our VDI cluster to create headroom for future business growth, and this extra capacity proved invaluable when we needed to switch rapidly to remote working. At its peak, we were supporting 200 employees with VDI capabilities, and the Lenovo ThinkAgile HX platform never missed a beat. Without question, our Lenovo and Nutanix solution made a vital contribution to keeping FNCB Bank running smoothly throughout the first wave of the pandemic.”
“The Lenovo solution practically takes care of itself, and we estimate that we’re saving around 17 hours per month on systems maintenance,” says Borchert. “Crucially, we can re-invest this time in delivering new services for our stakeholders.”
With an easy-to-manage platform underpinning its operations, FNCB Bank’s IT team are free to focus on what really counts: supporting the business and its customers.
“Compared to other vendors we’ve engaged in the past, working with Lenovo and Nutanix feels like a true partnership,” concludes Honick. “As we push ahead with our transformation initiatives, we’re confident we have the rock-solid IT platform and trusted partners we need to achieve our long-term growth goals.”