Partnering to Support Hurricane Victims
When Hurricanes Harvey and Irma hit the U.S. in 2017, the ensuing devastation left millions of victims in need of financial help. An appeal by one of the country’s leading humanitarian agencies garnered millions in donations, but the volume of requests for financial relief threatened to overload its website. Since this could have impeded the distribution of that aid to victims, a dramatic rescue effort was launched. Micro Focus and its Platinum Partner, Whitlock IS, sprang into action and used LoadRunner Cloud to verify a re-engineered solution and quickly get much needed aid into the hands of hurricane victims.
Frustrating Delays and Glitches
This success story was born out of consecutive disasters – the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey in Texas, followed by Hurricane Irma in Florida and the Caribbean. Many victims were left homeless, without power or basic necessities and in need of help. Following an appeal from a major U.S. humanitarian organization, millions of dollars in donations flowed in to provide relief.
Because of the number of people impacted, this created brand-new problems. The organization was concerned that its website couldn’t handle the influx of requests for aid and might suffer performance issues. The money was there, but victims could get frustrated by delays and glitches in processing their requests.
The organization did not have the internal expertise to diagnose and solve the problem, but what it did have was a longstanding relationship with Whitlock IS. Whitlock initially partnered with the organization in 2012 to solve a firewall problem with one of the organization’s business-critical applications, and the engagement has continued ever since.
Whitlock, in turn, has been partnering with Micro Focus, and was recently named “2017 Micro Focus Global Partner of the Year”. When Whitlock heard about the problem, co-founder and President Jeff Jamieson immediately thought of Micro Focus.
“Following the hurricane crisis, our customer was very concerned about potential issues with its website, and I received a call from its VP of IT. He left a dire message, and I could tell by the tone of his voice that this was a serious situation,” said Jamieson. “When he ended the call with the statement, ‘your country needs you’, I knew that we had to step up.”
LoadRunner Cloud Test Environment Ready within 2 Days
The first thing Jamieson did was call his primary partner manager at Micro Focus and went right up the chain. “I told them that we were in crisis mode with a customer and that we needed to team up and quickly solve the problem. The reaction was immediate and fantastic. They said, ‘tell us what you want, and we’ll make sure to get it done.’”
An emergency conversation took place between the three parties to assess the needs and scope of the issue, including the necessary tools and team members. It was determined that there could be a serious load issue, and everyone sprang into action. “We needed something that was quick and easy to stand up, as well as having the scalability for the type of traffic that the customer was experiencing, so we created an environment for LoadRunner Cloud – our SaaS-based load testing solution,” said Cyrus Manouchehrian, SaaS practice manager, Presales, Micro Focus.
The LoadRunner Cloud cloud-based service is designed to facilitate the planning, running and scaling of tests for web and mobile apps, and is scalable up to one million concurrent virtual users. Its ease of use means that load tests can be created in as little as 10 minutes. Subsequently, predictive analytics can then help users understand anomalies and problems in real-time, then formulate solutions.
Within hours, the initial testing and scripting process had begun, and within two days the LoadRunner Cloud test environment was up and running, with 400,000 virtual user hours deployed free of charge. Micro Focus also provided the services of its top scripters, free of charge, ensuring that all the donations would go to hurricane victims.
Tests featured over 10 million registrations and peaked at 700 registrations a second with a high-water mark of 40,000 concurrent users.
“It became a labor of love for all the parties involved,” said Manouchehrian.
Effective Teamwork to Support Nearly 500 Million Aid Requests
The newly-engineered website passed with flying colors. Within just a few days, Whitlock was able to tell everyone concerned that it was good to go. Thanks to the efforts of Whitlock IS and Micro Focus, the organization was able to process more than 477,000 requests for aid.
“The teamwork with Micro Focus was fantastic from start to finish. I had high expectations and they were exceeded. Not just its responsiveness, but also its understanding of the immediacy was fantastic,” says Mac Bullock, VP Sales & Marketing. “The customer told us that we could ‘put our Clark Kent disguises back on because our work as Superman was complete and the American people thanked us for it.’” Underlining the value of Whitlock’s partnership with Micro Focus, Jamieson concluded: “This situation was just further reinforcement of why we’ve been partnering exclusively with Micro Focus for all these years. As a small business owner, you might say putting all your eggs in one basket is not a smart strategy, but we’ve been able to run our business as an exclusive partner for nearly 15 years, and it just works.
“It’s because Micro Focus has a great partner program. It takes care of its partners and the programs are structured in a way that allows us all to be successful as a team.”
The essence of a true partnership is based on mutual respect, trust and co-operation. It runs much deeper than a pure business arrangement, and there can be no better evidence of that than the situation which faced Micro Focus and its Platinum Partner, Whitlock Infrastructure Services (IS), at the end of 2017. And it is partnerships like these that ensure the best possible outcomes for our customers.