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Capillary adopts platform engineering through Facets and achieves 100% cloud automation, developer Self-service and boosts Ops efficiency.
Facets has been a game-changer for Capillary. It has made our infrastructure more visible, standardized, and accessible. As a result, our releases are faster, we need less developer time, and our teams are free to focus on building exciting features. We have saved hundreds of person-hours and seen significant cost savings.
Capillary Technologies is a global leader in loyalty and customer engagement solutions with a presence across the United States, India, Middle East, and South East Asia. Catering to over 250 major brands and conglomerates in more than 30 countries, some of its esteemed clients include Tata Group, Asics, Shell, Hoya, and PUMA. The company has a massive reach of ~875M consumers and processes 1.95B+ transactions, annually.
With a dedicated team of 200 developers, Capillary manages two primary product lines in loyalty management, customer engagement, customer data platform, and e-commerce. These product lines operate across 5 non-production and 10 production environments located in different regions.
As Capillary grew, the constant need for agility and fast iterations put a strain on its lean operations team. With each product group wanting to introduce new services, experiment on various frameworks, or change existing setups, the lean Ops team was stretched thin. In addition to managing migrations and upgrades, addressing cost, security, and compliance issues, and dealing with service degradations, the Ops team was responsible for meeting the developers' changing needs.
This created several challenges for Capillary.
Firstly, this growing dependency on the Ops team led to. The Ops team introduced several processes, such as a ticketing system, which created delays and blockers for developers, creating productivity issues, and management overheads, and led to slower releases.
Secondly, the automation couldn't keep up and needed constant refresh. Triggering the majority of the automation required specialized skills and supervision which meant Dev teams couldn’t use them. This led toof understanding, resulting in predictability and reliability problems creeping into the infrastructure.. As describes it, "Part of the system was automated while other parts had no visibility."
Finally, as Capillary expanded into, additional production environments were needed. Each additional launch consumed significant Dev and Ops bandwidth during the initial setup as well as added slowness to the pace of change. As , notes, "Business conversations start at the time of sales: Do you have a local region or can you deploy on our private cloud?"
Capillary realized that they needed to reimagine a solution – that would empower developers to take ownership of their code and infrastructure while allowing the Ops team to focus on developer enablement.
The key problem that needed to be addressed was the interdependence between the Dev and Ops teams. To tackle this issue, the initial focus was on transforming the automations into a product. Previously, the Ops team relied on these automations to streamline their work, but they were not intended for the Devs to use in a self-service capacity. With the introduction of Facets,were implemented that were comprehensible to all teams.
Asnotes, "Facets has brought in standardization across all aspects– how you build, deploy, monitor, and how you access and interpret metrics – all of these are defined in a consistent way. Everyone speaks the same language and could easily comprehend their own and dependent services.”
Facets does not replace DevOps teams. By automating repeated and redundant tasks, the platform gives DevOps teams the time to focus on business-relevant problems. Facets is built on well-known technologies and provides transparency on how they are used. Further, it is extensible, encouraging DevOps teams to build on top of it.
The Dev teams' standardized workflows, combined with the Ops teams' guardrails, enabled both teams to work autonomously. For instance, if a Dev team wants to introduce a new module with additional services and databases, and obtain the required credentials for resource interaction with the services, they can do so without delving into the finer points, which minimizes the possibility of errors.
Asputs it: "All of the tasks that were slow and required oversight are now self-served. Ops teams control what capabilities are available for Devs. But once done, Dev teams make their own choices."
With increased bandwidth for Ops teams, they are now able to play a more expansive role. They focus on enhancing developer experiences and expanding Facets' capabilities.
“Nothing is dependent on Ops team any more. If the Devs want to use a completely new type of resource, Ops team build Terraform extension on top of Facets and make it available to them. Hence, we call them SRE & DevTools Teams now. We have 15 environments run by only a 6-member team because they don’t manage them but rather empower Devs to manage them,”adds.
Furthermore, Facets’ centralized developer experience, combined with complete auditability, guarantees that all essential information is available to the Dev teams in one place. For instance, if a developer faces a production issue, they can access all the relevant metrics, configurations, health, and changelogs all in a single location and can quickly respond to it. The increased visibility into resource and cloud cost enables Dev teams to proactively plan cost optimization within their sprints.
Asputs it: "Facets helped us achieve 99.99% of availability, higher release frequency, while sustaining the cloud cost."
Facets is designed to centralize all information required to launch a new environment. This means that launching a new environment with existing workflows can now be accomplished with a single click. In addition, Facets automates infrastructure upgrades such as Kubernetes upgrades, resulting in significant time savings across all environments, potentially saving hundreds of person-hours.
Asquantifies “A recent US region we launched took just under 2 weeks with 8 man-weeks of effort for the tech team to sign off – It used to be a 64 man-weeks of effort before Facets.”
boost in Dev productivity - Saving 30-40 hours of coordination efforts per scrum team per sprint
reduction in Ops tickets - Unattended releases of 40 major and 100s of minor releases per month
uptime - Improved stability and ability to respond faster
and no additional overhead - Managing in multiple geographical and private deployments: US, China, Asia, Middle East