Case Study

Manufacturer Brings Smart Visibility to Microsoft Azure Migration With NETSCOUT



The Challenge
  • Strategic transformation projects for SD-WAN, migration to private Microsoft Azure Cloud and to Microsoft Teams
  • Lacked visibility into all the new technologies to assure quality service and end-user performance
The Solution
  • nGeniusONE® Service Assurance platform and nGeniusONE Global Manager
  • vSTREAM™ virtual appliances
  • nGenius®PULSE and 3000 series nPoints
  • nGenius for Flows and nGenius Collectors
  • nGenius Visibility-as-a-Service
The Results
  • Expanded visibility into their digital transformations to ensure successful deployments
  • Quick time-to-value with nVaaS

Customer Profile

This multibillion-dollar manufacturer of food products is parent to some of the most-beloved brands worldwide. Producing products enjoyed by people of all ages, they have more than 50,000 employees supporting sales, service, and manufacturing operations in over 200 locations in 50+ countries. The manufacturer’s success requires a world-class supply chain process, as well as marketing and sales excellence to help achieve their customer service, revenue, and profitability goals.

The manufacturer has highlighted that their operational success has been due, in part, to their commitment to innovation and digital transformation. One area of focus is their dedicated investments in several research and development centers globally staffed with thousands of scientists, chemists, and engineers who are innovating the company’s products. Additionally, investments in software-defined networking (SDN), software-as-a-service (SaaS), unified communications- as-a-service (UCaaS), public and private cloud are transforming their business and how they work together.

The Challenge

The IT team for this manufacturer was implementing several strategic initiatives that would transform many of their traditional network, data center, business, and UC technologies, including:

  • Converting their remote site connectivity with the introduction of Software Defined Wide Area Networking (SD-WAN) technology from Silver Peak to their 200+ worldwide locations.
  • Migrating their corporate data center applications and services to private Microsoft Azure Cloud infrastructure; plans called for some services to be refactored and others to be lift-and shift migrations.
  • Implementing Microsoft Office 365 enterprise-wide.
  • Transitioning global communications from Microsoft Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams.

One noteworthy aspect of all of these digital transformations was the fact that, from the perspective of assuring the seamless transition and operation of all these enhancements, the IT organization’s installed performance management solutions were incapable of monitoring, analyzing, and troubleshooting issues in all of the new environments. Recognizing that they were effectively blind and knowing the success of their projects would depend on quality application service delivery to their end users, the IT team initiated a search for a single solution to provide visibility throughout their transforming enterprise. The solution would need to offer visibility into their new cloud and SD-WAN infrastructure, as well as their migrating application services, regardless of the provider, to quickly discern where degradations may exist, for rapid restoration of services; hopefully prior to users being impacted.

Solution in Action

The IT team for this manufacturer performed a detailed due diligence of several possible approaches for gaining visibility into network and application performance monitoring and troubleshooting for the varied projects they were planning. They decided on NETSCOUT®, with visibility solutions that are helping the IT team navigate their strategic projects:

  • Migrating application services to their Microsoft Azure private cloud using nGeniusONE service assurance solution analyzing data and metrics from vSTREAM virtual appliances with Adaptive Service Intelligence™ (ASI) technology. This helped the team successfully migrate their SAP service to the Azure cloud and will be used for monitoring performance as they migrate other applications, including both those being refactored as well as lift-and-shift migrations.
  • Ongoing performance management and troubleshooting of applications in the Azure cloud, such as SAP and Microsoft Office 365, to ensure availability and reliability of the applications to their global user community. With vSTREAM virtual appliances monitoring the activity, the IT staff can stay ahead of emerging issues and have the visibility necessary to reduce the time to troubleshoot degradations.
  • Monitoring utilization and application activity over SD-WAN from the hundreds of remote offices and manufacturing plants using nGenius for Flows and nGenius 3000 series collectors. The IT team is leveraging the trended data to evaluate how bandwidth capacity is being utilized to avoid congestion and bottlenecks with visibility and planning.
  • Ensuring quality voice communications as they transition to Microsoft Teams from Microsoft Skype for Business. This is a business that depends on high-quality voice communications between employees throughout the entire organization. The IT team is assuring end-user experience and reducing mean-time-to-resolve (MTTR) issues impacting Microsoft Teams using consistent, scheduled synthetic testing from nGeniusPULSE with 3000 series nPoint devices and real-time packet monitoring from nGeniusONE with vSTREAM appliances.

Finally, NETSCOUT’s nGenius Visibility as a Service (nVaaS) consultative approach to operationalizing the nGenius solutions across the manufacturer’s IT environment provided the skills and experience necessary to quickly execute timely and effective dashboards, alerts, business transaction tests, and reports for meaningful use by the IT organization.

The Results

Successfully navigating any digital or data transformation can be tricky, but executing several at once can be overwhelming, particularly without visibility across the global, complex environment. The use of nVaaS consultative services offered a bridge to quickly configuring nGenius solutions to monitor and analyze their digital transformations for lower MTTR with rapid triage in the event of degradations or issues. This has helped the manufacturer realize a rapid time to value with the new NETSCOUT deployment. It is also assuring that the different projects underway are meeting the standards expected by their end users.

A major benefit has been the same NETSCOUT solution is providing visibility in any infrastructure, for any service, regardless of the vendor or technology. This has reduced costs associated with multiple tools and improved collaboration within the IT department as they work together, all leveraging NETSCOUT monitored data for issue resolution, strategic planning, and evidence-based decision-making.