The Lego Group Is Using IT the Right Way
Regardless of a business’ size, technology can help it to resolve many of the operational challenges it is contending with. For instance, global toy producer The Lego Group shared their own story about how improved IT solutions helped it to address some significant issues it had. Let’s go over what The Lego Group did, and then see how their process could translate to your business.
What The Lego Group Was Dealing With
At this year’s AWS re:Invent conference, Lego shared that they had been experiencing some severe technical difficulties for some time. Namely, their team in charge of their Direct Shopper Technology was having some considerable problems with their online marketplace. Spikes in traffic, like those observed at product launches and sales events, could consistently reach 9.5 times their usual traffic levels, with their transactions increasing 200-fold.
One example of their difficulties came in 2017, when they launched (what was at the time) their largest set: the 7,541-piece Star Wars™ Ultimate Collector Series Millennium Falcon™. This release generated enough traffic to completely overload the backend of their website and crash the sales tax calculator that was hosted on their in-house servers.
With this turn of events, many hopeful site visitors were only presented with the website’s maintenance page.
This made it clear to The Lego Group that the limited scalability of their on-premises infrastructure wasn’t going to cut the mustard any longer, which spurred them on to make some considerable changes. These changes would not only help them to adapt to the traffic spikes they were prone to—they would also free up the customer experience team to innovate upon the website rather than fight to keep it up.
The Lego Group’s Resulting Growth
Electing to migrate to the cloud in 2018, the first tools that Lego shifted over were a few processing services and their all-important sales tax calculator. Ten months later, the company was entirely serverless, with their platform meeting the capabilities that their in-house infrastructure once provided. Soon after, their cloud capabilities had grown further and enabled them to break their previous monthly records.
By the time July of 2019 rolled around, The Lego Group had increased the number of engineers they employed by a multiple of three, thanks to remote operations. Thirty six more serverless platforms were added to simplify monitoring for issues and to automate some of their processes. As a result, The Lego Group has been able to focus more on features dedicated to improving the customer experience, rather than their essential upkeep.
What This Means for You
While your business may not be a 120-year-old global toy manufacturer, cloud services and the concepts around them can potentially have similar results on a scale more applicable to your own operations. The important thing to realize is that the concepts Lego put into place are scalable and industry-agnostic, so any business could conceivably benefit from putting them into place. However (and there’s always a ‘however’), cloud solutions aren’t necessarily the best for every business.
Why Not Cloud?
We speak to prospects all the time who have been forced to the cloud by their IT providers, and who aren’t happy about it. Before you move to the cloud, consider a few things; do you have enough bandwidth to support the solutions you’re about to move to the cloud (applications with large files such as Auto-CAD can be very frustrating when trying to share to/from the cloud) ? What’s your tolerance for an internet outage (if you don’t have a redundant/failover connection, what happens to your business in the event of an outage? Can you continue to work offline, or will this shut business down until the connection is restored?). Do you prefer a capital expense for onsite servers over the subscription model that is the cloud?
While the cloud may not be the best for every business, the key is to not be forced into a solution. Ask questions, and if your provider isn’t asking similar questions regarding you and your needs, it may be time for a change. And if you’re really insistent on getting your business to the cloud, there are always hybrid cloud solutions. Microsoft 365 for email and applications is a great way to test the water, so to speak.
Ashton Technology Solutions is here to help you do better understand the cloud. Our managed IT and consulting services are designed to help businesses adopt the modern solutions needed without adding on the worries of maintenance or other technology challenges. To find out more, give us a call today at 216-397-4080.