Leading professional services firm enhances agility with Oracle Exadata Database Service on OCI to manage over 24 terabytes of HR and finance data.
“Oracle Exadata Database Service has drastically improved the performance of our extensive Oracle PeopleSoft application, which serves more than 340,000 employees globally. Availability is higher, security is tighter, and we now have the necessary scalability to make future acquisitions easier and business growth smoother.”
After experiencing significant growth over the past several years, Cognizant needed to closely monitor and manage the increasing demand for its core Oracle PeopleSoft application, used by more than 340,000 employees for a range of human resources, finance, and operations activities.
With a tight end-of-month closing cycle, the global professional services company could not afford any delays in financial processes. But with thousands of employees regularly submitting project timesheets simultaneously, system performance was becoming increasingly impacted.
“Having the ability to observe and manage our PeopleSoft environment using OCI native tools, including OCI Application Performance Monitoring, OCI Database Management, and OCI Logging Analytics, has been key to our cloud transformation project, enabling us to be proactive and reducing firefighting by more than 50%,“ says Gopi Krishnan Gunasekaran, associate director of Cognizant Technology Solutions.
Why Cognizant chose Oracle
With a substantial increase in headcount and revenue, achieved through both natural growth and acquisitions, Cognizant began to assess cloud infrastructure solutions that would give the company the scalability and manageability it needed. Among the most important selection criteria were system performance, availability, and security to support a complex IT ecosystem with more than 24 terabytes of data.
Cognizant was impressed with the network performance of Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI), and selected Oracle Exadata Database Service as the best solution for running its massive PeopleSoft application, particularly during times of high traffic when latency and throughput are critical.
“The Advanced Customer Services team was very flexible and was like an extended Cognizant IT team. We worked together to deliver a complex plan on schedule,” says Ilamurugu Porselvi Sivakumar, director of IT.
By migrating PeopleSoft to Oracle Exadata Database Service, Cognizant improved performance by 40% and eliminated capacity issues during peak hours. Cognizant increased the performance, availability, security, and scalability of its critical PeopleSoft application by migrating production, non-production, and disaster recovery environments to OCI—significantly boosting the company’s agility and reducing business risk.
While Cognizant previously used two separate systems for reporting and Online Transaction Processing workloads, it now runs both at the same time seamlessly on Oracle Exadata Database Service. Batch performance also dramatically improved using the system’s Smart Scan technology, ensuring the IT department consistently delivers on its service level agreements with the business.
With PeopleSoft running on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, Cognizant’s hybrid cloud model works with minimal business interruption. The company’s hardware systems are no longer stressed during peak times—when up to 25,000 users submit project timesheets concurrently—enabling the company to close its books faster and ensure full compliance with financial reporting regulations.
About 170 applications take data from PeopleSoft applications for various other actions, with 180-plus total interfaces in operation. Cognizant moved all of these from on-premises to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure without any outages or a single escalation from the business. Service levels also improved by increasing the availability of Cognizant’s PeopleSoft HCM and finance databases, which each hold 12 terabytes of data and together form the backbone of the company’s IT and consulting services operations.
The company also minimized implementation risk by using Oracle Zero Downtime Migration to automatically transfer more than 24 terabytes of data to the Oracle Cloud—a process requiring just an hour of manual configuration instead of multiple days effort.
Using OCI’s power and scalability, Cognizant greatly enhanced its agility to meet business growth needs. By moving from Oracle Exadata on-premises to Exadata Database Service, the company increased the number of users by more than 40% with no impact on performance, and automatically scaled its infrastructure while continuing to expand both organically and through acquisitions.
Additionally, Cognizant started using OCI Observability and Management daily. This enabled the company to see its complete PeopleSoft environment, from the load balancer to the web server to the app server to the bandwidth level across all layers. Today, all technical teams can drill down and resolve issues in minutes.
Using Oracle Data Safe, Cognizant enhanced data protection and enforced policies that simplified regulatory compliance efforts. OCI Vault allowed the company to manage database and file system encryption keys along with security certificates in a single place.
The IT team also uses OCI Identity and Access Management to govern access management and update permissions in line with the hundreds of role changes that happen across Cognizant each week.
The Oracle Cloud implementation significantly relieved the burden on Cognizant’s IT team, which no longer spends time on hardware maintenance or worries about capacity during demanding workloads. Database refresh activities, which used to take up to 18 hours, are now completed in less than 2 hours.
Cognizant ensured a smooth, seamless, and on-schedule transition to the Oracle Cloud by engaging Oracle Advanced Customer Services.
About the customer
Cognizant is one of the world’s leading professional services companies, delivering IT and consulting services that transform clients’ business, operating, and technology models. It is part of the NASDAQ-100 index (CTSH).