The Bank of Georgia transforms its infrastructure to deliver best-in-class customer experiences

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“With Kubernetes and SUSE Rancher, we get the scalability, mobility and high availability we need to deliver high-performing solutions to our customers.” Vazha Mantua, Deputy CIO, Bank of Georgia.

 Bank of Georgia customer banking on her phone

The Bank of Georgia’s commitment to delivering best-of-breed solutions to its customers instigated a decision to transform its monolithic processes and applications into portable microservices.

When Bank of Georgia built its IT infrastructure in the early 2000s, it was made to support bank operators working standard banking hours. But as demand increased for online and mobile banking services, the IT team retrofitted its environment to deliver on the bank’s outstanding customer experience.

Maintaining this infrastructure, however, was time consuming, expensive and demanding, threatening to not only stymy the company’s ability to develop innovative services, but also to provide continuity of service. Bank of Georgia knew it needed to become more agile and that its technology infrastructure must scale to hasten development velocity.

The team turned to its IT consulting partner, High-Tech Solutions, to help build a Kubernetes infrastructure and source a Kubernetes management solution that would fit the bank’s requirements to deliver on four key needs: high availability, performance, scalability, and mobility.

Following a proof of concept phase with three other vendors, the Bank of Georgia chose SUSE Rancher because of its functionality and pricing model. Its one-node licensing structure enables IT departments to scale, whether it be on-premises or in the cloud, without incurring additional costs. SUSE Rancher was also the right match in terms of features, enabling the flexibility required to manage a complex, hybrid environment running portable microservices across two data centers.

Transforming into a digital bank

Within months the Bank of Georgia IT team had completed implementation and built its SUSE Rancher and Kubernetes environment. It built two clusters (one for development and the other for production) and completed the migration of its core banking applications to the new infrastructure. The team also implemented a stretched Kubernetes cluster over its two data centers that sit miles apart — this stretched cluster is the first of its kind in the region.

After implementing Kubernetes and SUSE Rancher, the bank’s infrastructure is faster, more secure and runs with minimal intervention from its staff. Equipped with SUSE Rancher, the team is now able to automate several basic processes so that developers can spend less time on administration and more time on application innovation.

The bank’s systems now process four to five times faster, and the team has the flexibility to innovate and apply updates or tear down services seamlessly—they can get new applications into customers’ hands quickly and securely with no disruption. There have also been zero failures during periods of peak demand.

Access controls have been automated and rules-based security policies mean less time configuring and more developing. This has enabled the bank’s IT security team to embed security policies into the architecture.

A single pane-of-glass allows the management of a complex environment to be centralized, meaning any issues can be found and fixed quicker, and workloads can be balanced easily–allowing systems to scale automatically based on demand.

The Bank of Georgia is excited for its digital future. In addition to finalizing its preparations for migrating to the cloud, the IT team hopes to recruit a slew of IT talent from the region who can help manifest the bank’s digital ambitions.

Click here to find out more about how SUSE has helped The Bank of Georgia transform its infrastructure to deliver best-in-class customer experiences.

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Imran Khan
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