Many people take financial services for granted and yet for others, fees and minimum balances make it difficult to get started. At Founders Federal Credit Union, providing affordable financial services and making them accessible to everyone is a primary goal. It’s part of our community focus that extends from helping people manage the health of their finances to volunteering at local food banks in the communities we serve.

That’s one reason Founders partners with EMC. In addition to providing industry-leading technology, EMC is recognized for outstanding community service. We’ve found a perfect marriage between our strategic visions and EMC products, which has been a game changer for Founders.

Our EMC infrastructure lets us spin up a business solution in two days compared to three months in the past. The demand for Information Technology services requires us to adjust daily in a growing sector of mobile services, governance and compliance.  With new payment channels such as Apple Pay and Bitcoin, we require technology that can adjust as quickly as our members’ needs.

Here’s how we did it:

With our previous storage environment and Hyper-V virtualization, Information Technology Services identified inconsistencies and every patch cycle, regulatory change, or audit review caused product delivery delays or outages.  Every new regulatory change delayed a project to determine our risk or implement compensating controls.  We were too busy fighting fires to work strategically with the enterprise.

We decided to move to EMC XtremIO all-flash storage array and EMC VNX unified storage.  XtremIO supports our core business applications, operating systems and web services. VNX handles our core financial application and ECM repository. We’re 99% virtualized with VMware vSphere and deliver a measurable, repeatable and effective service 24x7x365.

Now, we spend only 10% of our time resolving compliance concerns, thanks to the reliability and product security of the EMC solutions. Efficiency has also improved in other ways. With XtremIO’s compression and deduplication, we get 3:1 data reduction and thin provisioning brings total space savings to 7:1.  Before, we needed at least 30 minutes to provision a LUN. On XtremIO, it takes less than five minutes.

Performance also has improved—to the tune of 40% across the board with XtremIO. An example is Citrix applications that previously opened in 20-30 seconds now take 10-12 seconds.  This is critical as all businesses today are doing more with less to stay competitive and drive value for the members we serve.

Our data is better protected too. We use EMC RecoverPoint to continuously replicate XtremIO and VNX to a remote site located in another state.  This brought our recovery point objective from 72 hours to just minutes and our recovery time objective to industry best practice standard.

Finally, data is backed up on EMC Data Domain. Instead of monthly backups that previously took 50 hours and often required complicated restore procedures, we now have weekly backups completing in a meaningful timeframe.

All of this transformed IT from a bottleneck to a business enabler.  Now we’re at the table planning solutions and spending time on what’s most impactful to our members.

Plus, even though our business is expanding and we expect significant employee growth in 2016, we are ready. We’ve laid the groundwork with EMC so we’re in a great place to innovate without boundaries and take on whatever the business sends our way.

The folks at EMC are a game changer for our staff and the product direction they deliver is nothing short of a miracle.  Our needs and desires appear to be their passion, no matter the size of our institution.

Bob Bender

Chief Technology Officer, Founders Federal Credit Union and Guest Blogger

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