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Chelsea Groton Bank

Company:

Chelsea Groton Bank doesn’t answer to shareholders. Chelsea Groton Bank partners with customers. Founded in 1854, Chelsea Groton is an independent, mutually owned community bank committed to serving Eastern Connecticut. Chelsea Groton’s 200 employees in 15 banking locations help tens of thousands of customers manage their finances safely, simply and effectively, turning their long-term goals into realities.

Challenge:

Generations of customers have banked with Chelsea Groton for more than 160 years. Their loyalty and trust is a direct result of the bank’s extraordinary customer service. Chelsea Groton can’t provide this level of service if the VMs supporting the customer call center, document imaging system and email are unavailable. To avoid the risk of downtime, Chelsea Groton decided to shorten RTPO.

Results:

  • Availability guarantees customer service delivery
  • Ultra-fast recovery maximizes DR readiness
  • Operational and capital expenditures shrink

About F3 Technology Partners:

F3 Technology Partners is a system integrator founded in 2007 in Hartford, Connecticut. F3 provides customers with transformative solutions that reduce the time, effort and cost of building and maintaining their IT infrastructures. F3 solutions blend in-house, hybrid and cloud solutions that align with customers’ business needs and their operational and capital expenditure financing models.

The Business Challenge

Chelsea Groton Bank began serving customers long before the invention of the automobile, light bulb and radio. Today many of the same families and businesses continue to bank with Chelsea Groton, despite big banks attempting to lure them away. Customers trust Chelsea Groton with their financial futures, and that trust is a direct result of extraordinary customer service.

“We are very serious about providing our customers with the service they deserve,” said Larry Walker, Vice President & Data Processing Officer at Chelsea Groton Bank. “However, we can’t wait on customers and provide extraordinary service if the virtual machines (VMs) supporting our customer call center, email and document imaging system are unavailable. They must be available when we need them.”

To ensure VMs are available, Chelsea Groton deployed Veeam® Backup & Replication™ in 2008 and became one of Veeam Software’s first customers. Since then, Chelsea Groton’s customer base has grown along with its data, and the number of VMware vSphere VMs doubled. Given this rate of growth, the bank revisited recovery time and point objectives (RTPO™) to ensure availability of the VMs supporting customer service.

“We wanted to shorten RTPO, but without a huge dollar sign attached,” Walker explained. “To shorten recovery time, we had to restore even faster. To increase recovery points, we had to back up more often, but more frequent backup required additional WAN bandwidth and backup storage. We were due for a storage refresh, so we looked into Veeam integration with NetApp storage. We also contacted F3 Technology Partners for input.”

F3 Technology Partners, one of Veeam Software’s first ProPartners, helped Chelsea Groton with its original implementation of Veeam. F3 provides customers with solutions that decrease the time, effort and cost of running IT infrastructures.

“We’re very diligent about helping customers improve RTPO while saving money,” said Jeff Monnes, Founder & VP of Sales at F3 Technology Partners. “Veeam and NetApp integration is perfect for many of our customers, including Chelsea Groton. Veeam and NetApp deliver availability, flexibility and efficiency, while saving companies money.”

The Veeam Solution

Chelsea Groton replaced its backup storage with NetApp to gain the power of Veeam integration. Veeam and NetApp shortened RTPO for customer service systems, delivering the availability required for extraordinary customer service. Veeam and NetApp also saved Chelsea Groton $25,000 in backup storage and $1,000 each month in WAN bandwidth.

“We can’t provide the appropriate level of customer service if critical VMs aren’t available,” Walker said. “By shortening RTPO, Veeam and NetApp guaranteed availability for us. Availability is everything to the business — availability increases efficiencies throughout the bank.”

Veeam and NetApp integration shortened RTPO in two ways. Chelsea Groton backs up from NetApp storage snapshots with no impact on the production environment, employees and the business. This enables more frequent backup, which increases the number of recovery points for critical VMs supporting customer service systems. Veeam’s high-speed recovery features restore from NetApp storage snapshots in minutes: Instant VM Recovery® restores critical VMs, and Veeam Explorer™ for Microsoft Exchange restore emails. Some backup jobs have a secondary target of NetApp SnapMirror, which sends backup copies to the DR site. Those backups can also be recovered quickly in case of disaster.

“With just a few clicks in the Veeam interface, a VM is running on our DR SAN and we can vMotion it anywhere,” Walker said. “Veeam and NetApp give us the flexibility to recover wherever we’d like. We’re required by regulation to recover documents timely. The auditor who assessed our recovery efforts watched me recover a 500GB Exchange VM at our DR site in fewer than 30 minutes. He was so impressed that he implemented Veeam at his company.”

In addition to shortening RTPO, Veeam and NetApp integration saved money.

“We back up from NetApp SnapMirror to our DR site,” Walker said. “The Veeam server is aware of all backup jobs and restore points, so we no longer need to pull DR jobs over the WAN because Instant VM Recovery® restores from a snapshot. This reduces WAN traffic by 50%, saving $1,000 each month because we don’t have to purchase additional bandwidth. Our replication storage requirements decreased by 50%, saving the bank $25,000 in storage space. Veeam and NetApp deliver unbelievable power, agility and savings.”

The Results

  • Availability guarantees customer service delivery
    Veeam’s integration with NetApp shortened RTPO for Chelsea Groton, delivering availability of VMs supporting customer service systems.
    “Veeam and NetApp guarantee our customer service systems are available, enabling us to provide the level of service our customers expect and deserve.”
  • Ultra-fast recovery maximizes DR readiness
    Walker said Veeam has maintained a perfect recovery record since deployment in 2008.
    “Restoring from a backup is fast and easy, but restoring from a NetApp storage snapshot and SnapMirror is faster and easier. If a VM fails, I can have a backup running locally or at our DR site in the time it takes to start it.”
  • Operational and capital expenditures shrink
    Together, Veeam and NetApp cut two data center requirements in half: WAN traffic, which saved the bank $1,000 per month in bandwidth, and backup storage, which saved $25,000.
Chelsea Groton Bank
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