Progress MDBA Safeguards Mission-Critical Systems for BerkOne
Nothing is more crucial to business process automation leader BerkOne than system reliability. After all, the company manages business-critical systems and handles business processes for more than 300 clients. From accounts payable automation to records management and IT and cloud services, clients rely on BerkOne to keep their businesses running.
“It’s imperative that our systems are available 24 x 7,” said Kristen Dougherty, BerkOne Director of Development. “Our customers rely on us and we have SLAs (service level agreements) to meet.”
BerkOne utilizes Progress® OpenEdge® to manage mission-critical apps for two of its most valuable clients — one app for tax processing, the other for collateral management. When database performance began to slow down, BerkOne needed to resolve the situation — fast.
A long-time Progress customer, BerkOne looked first to Progress Services to address the situation before it began to affect production. An onsite evaluation revealed BerkOne could benefit from database tuning. The evaluation also uncovered opportunities for operational improvements, including a new backup strategy and system monitoring to proactively flag potential performance issues.
“The Services team quickly came up with an action plan to resolve our issues,” Dougherty said. “We realized they had a level of expertise that is difficult, or even impossible to match, and we felt that if anyone could help us, it would be the members of the Progress team.”
The first project tackled by the team was database tuning — and the results were immediate.
“That activity alone sped up our system considerably,” Dougherty said. “One key client report ran more than 250% faster after the tuning was completed.”
The next priority was to put a strategy in place to actively monitor and manage BerkOne’s databases. That initiative included installing Progress OpenEdge ProMonitor for a real-time view of their databases, with performance statistics recorded daily. Additionally, BerkOne subscribed to Progress OpenEdge Managed Database Administration (MDBA) services for 24 x 7 database management.
“Progress MDBA has increased our system availability,” Dougherty said. “It has reduced our risk because we are now actively monitoring and proactively ensuring the health of our production databases.”
From an efficiency standpoint, Progress MDBA has proven its value as well.
“The Progress MDBA team has eliminated the need for us to grow our database resources as the company grows. We can rely on Progress to help us scale our database infrastructure to stay ahead of the company’s growth curve,” Dougherty said. “And we aren’t limited by the knowledge and availability of BerkOne internal resources. With MDBA we have an extended virtual team with an unmatched level of expertise.”
BerkOne’s Services engagement also resulted in a number of other system improvements. Previously, BerkOne had been doing offline backups six nights a week.
“The team helped us switch to online backups, which reduced database restarts to only once per week,” Dougherty explained. “This change dramatically reduced the chance of having issues during start-up since we are now minimizing the number of times we are restarting the system.”
Three key benefits BerkOne is receiving from its Progress MDBA include:
Pro-active database management allows BerkOne to implement preemptive suggestions made by the Services team before issues arise
Real-time monitoring and 24 x 7 support ensures that mission critical databases are managed by OpenEdge experts on a continuous basis
The Services team’s depth of Progress OpenEdge expertise ensures rapid problem resolution
After working with Progress Services for three years, Dougherty considers the team to be an extended part of the BerkOne organization. “We can always rely on the team to not just come up with a solution, but help us to implement that solution,” Dougherty said. “With the Progress MDBA team helping us manage our databases and acting as knowledge experts, we know our Progress databases are in good hands, and we can focus on other aspects of the business.”
Headquartered in Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley, BerkOne delivers business process automation, IT solutions and services that empower organizations of all sizes to focus on what makes them great. From the reduction of manual tasks associated with accounts payable processing to mission-critical document scanning, printing and mailing, content and records management, physical security, lockbox services, IT consulting and helpdesk services, BerkOne provides the technology, skills and infrastructure to get the job done. www.berkone.com