Bank quickly consolidates aging servers and network into an integrated, cloud-ready infrastructure with IBM Flex System

Since the IBM PureSystems family of expert integrated systems debuted in 2012, IBM has shipped more than 10,000 systems. To mark that milestone, we are presenting a series of stories about clients whose operations were transformed by IBM PureSystems.

Bank of Utah_FBWhat does an organization do when its computing needs outgrow its aging server environment?

That was the challenge facing the 10-member IT team supporting Bank of Utah.  The bank, headquartered in Ogden, has 300 employees providing personal and business banking, home lending, trust management and investment services from 13 full-service branch offices.

The bank’s business was rapidly evolving, requiring increasingly complex requirements and applications. For example, the bank had to quickly process 35,000 to 40,000 documents into an imaging system daily. The bank’s aging, inefficient storage and server infrastructure was straining under the workload.  When it went out, the IT staff had to recover data manually.

To streamline existing operations and position itself for future needs, Bank of Utah needed an integrated, scalable and flexible server environment with a simplified user interface and better disaster recovery. The solution had to improve resilience and security, adapt quickly to new business demands and provide a nondisruptive migration.

IBM Flex System integration brings it all together fast

Bank of Utah chose an IBM Flex System solution to consolidate servers and networking into one integrated infrastructure.

The bank engaged IBM and IBM Premier Business Partner Ciber to install four IBM Flex System Enterprise Chassis. Each chassis was outfitted with 13 IBM Flex System x240 compute nodes. After the initial planning, Ciber provided solution assurance, technical and delivery assessment review and implementation support.

The Flex System installation provided a consolidated footprint and more flexibility in the bank’s data centers, helping employees move applications when or where they are needed. The system’s interoperability and ability to connect new and existing storage area networks (SANs) enabled the bank to complete 85 percent of its migrations within two days. Most users didn’t even notice the transition.

Scalable infrastructure positions the bank for the future

The solution significantly reduced network traffic because network connectivity stays within the four IBM Flex System Enterprise Chassis without hitting the core. The single, integrated infrastructure improved system response time, especially when detecting and reporting potential fraud incidents.

Among other benefits, the Flex System solution:

• Avoided an upgrade to the core network, saving USD100,000

• Reduced the amount of rack space and required energy by approximately 50 percent as a result of the consolidated footprint

• Decreased the total number of necessary network connections by approximately 40 percent because of infrastructure integration

Chris McIntyre, vice president of IT for Bank of Utah, says: “With Flex System, we feel data- and cloud-ready, and we now have a solid data-recovery program. The system is centralized, secure and scalable, plus applications run faster. We can prepare for the future with a clear product roadmap.”

For more details on how expert integration helped transform Bank of Utah, see the full case study.


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Cathy Cocco

About Cathy Cocco

Cathy Cocco is a market segment manager in the IBM PureFlex and Flex Systems Marketing team. She is responsible for worldwide marketing and sales plays and solutions targeted at driving the Integrated Systems value proposition into the IT marketplace. Cathy started her career at IBM in 1989 as part of the IBM Mainframe team and then moved to Austin to join the RS/6000 UNIX development team. She held positions in development engineering, operations and then moved to marketing roles. She led the UNIX workstation and entry server marketing team and then became the Business Development Executive in High Performance Computing Marketing, selling solutions on IBM workstations and servers targeting Automotive, Aerospace, Manufacturing and Petroleum industries. She took an assignment working in China as a Sales Executive in the Telco Industry. She came back to a U.S. role, working in the Sensors and Actuators Group selling RFID software solutions into Healthcare, Pharmaceutical and the Energy and Utility industries. She continued to sell software and started selling services when she moved to the Public Sector, Supply Chain Group in IBM Global Business Consulting. Cathy holds a BSEE from Cornell University as well as a MS in Reliability Engineering and an MBA in Marketing.