The Business Challenge
Reynolds delivers fresh produce and chilled foods in the United Kingdom, managing more than 3,000 orders each day. The company supplies thousands of items to cater to customers’ specific needs, such as sourcing within a certain geographical distance. Reynolds takes great pride in its commitment to exceptional customer service.
To maintain that level of service, Reynolds must protect data in its supply chain. Some of the most critical data comes from customers placing orders. Many of them have proprietary ordering systems, so Reynolds maps their orders to its enterprise resource planning (ERP) software.
“Taking in orders is a critical component of our business because we can’t carry on without them,” said Richard Calder, IT Director, Reynolds. “If we can’t take in orders, the supply chain stops and the business dies. It’s absolutely essential that customers’ orders are mapped to our ERP software successfully. If there’s an issue, we have to be able to recover data quickly.”
Recovering data quickly became a challenge for Reynolds. The company’s legacy backup solution was difficult to manage, making recovery laborious and time-consuming.
“If we were to experience a hardware failure, recovery might take six hours or more,” Calder said. “Employees pick, pack and deliver 24 hours each day, so we can’t afford to be down for any period of time. Our customers depend on us, and we’re not going to disappoint them.”
The Veeam Solution
Reynolds replaced legacy backup with Veeam Availability Suite. Reynolds backs up 14 TB across 109 VMware vSphere virtual machines on-premises for fast, local recovery and transfers backup copies to AWS for disaster recovery.
“Some of the biggest names in the restaurant industry trust us to supply their fruits, vegetables and chilled foods,” Calder said. “Our supply chain makes that possible, and Veeam helps us protect the data that goes into it.”
Recovering data with Veeam is 92% faster than legacy backup, and that’s just one of the benefits Veeam provides. After customers place their orders, Reynolds delivers them the next morning. To guarantee efficient, reliable service and delivery, the company develops proprietary Android applications used by warehouse employees and delivery drivers.
“These are the apps that enable us to pick, pack and deliver all day and night,” said Justin Lamb, Infrastructure and Application Specialist, Reynolds. “We’re always working to improve our apps to increase service levels, and Veeam helps by providing test labs.”
Veeam DataLabs lets Reynolds leverage data for greater business acceleration. A feature called On-Demand Sandbox creates isolated environments for research and development testing on the Android apps. Isolated environments also let the IT team test software updates before committing them to production.
“Before we began using On-Demand Sandbox, we updated an Android app in production, ran into a problem and couldn’t reverse it,” Lamb said. “No worries though because Instant VM Recovery restored the virtual machine running the software in minutes.”
Another feature of Veeam DataLabs is SureBackup, which automatically verifies the recoverability of backups. “SureBackup is a big timesaver,” Lamb said. “We no longer have to supervise backups and rerun them because Veeam does that for us. Veeam also monitors and reports on our virtual environment, making us aware of issues we can resolve proactively so they don’t affect the business. Before I leave each Friday, one of the last things I do is check a Veeam report that lists drive space per server. I add more space if needed and go home knowing we’ll avoid a crash over the weekend.”
“Veeam reduces the complexity of data protection,” Calder said. “Because Veeam saves so much time (the equivalent of one full-time position) the person who looked after backup and storage has different job duties now. He developed a process that provides complete visibility into support services for our customers, suppliers and employees. It’s proven extremely useful and saved us even more time.
“Veeam is a good example of a solution that adds tremendous value to the business,” Calder continued. “We’re always looking for products that deliver what they promise without adding complexity, and Veeam is spot on. Deploying Veeam is one of the best business decisions we’ve made.”
- Increases the recovery speed of critical supply-chain data by 92%
Reynolds picks, packs and delivers customers’ orders 24 hours a day, so downtime is not an option. Veeam reduces the risk of downtime by recovering critical data 92% faster than legacy backup.
- Supports Reynolds’ guarantee of efficient, reliable service and delivery
Not only does Veeam provide Reynolds with isolated test environments to develop its warehouse and delivery apps, Veeam also backs up the apps. “They’re vital to the business, so it’s reassuring to know our apps are always protected,” Lamb said.
- Reduces the complexity of data protection, saving one full-time position
“Because of Veeam we didn’t need a full-time person committed to backup and storage,” Calder said. “Veeam takes very little time to manage, and it does what it promises to do every time. We’re constantly contemplating different hardware and software for our IT infrastructure, but Veeam is always a given. There continues to be a strong use-case for Veeam and always will be.”