Ibexa Cloud Pays for Itself in Seven Months
Platform.sh is the cloud hosting platform that partners with Ibexa to give clients peace of mind, faster time to market, sustainability, and a substantial return on investment.
William Rollin, Channel Sales Managers at Platform.sh, describes the Ibexa Cloud offering: “Ibexa Cloud is the best-of-breed fully integrated solution. It allows the user to benefit from all the features of Ibexa DXP, hosted in an optimized cloud environment that allows the teams to focus only on creating the business value - creating and enhancing the code.”
The number of organizations choosing to implement a DXP on-premise is diminishing, apart from the fact that many see the value of Ibexa Cloud, most do not have the knowledge and experience in-house to host and maintain a platform on a “generic” cloud server such as AWS or Microsoft Azure. Ibexa DXP implementation partners typically prefer to offload these responsibilities on a specialized, third-party cloud hosting platform such as Platform.sh.
“A cloud environment is very complicated to manage because you need a lot of tools, and even more competency skills to maintain that environment,” says Rollin. “But if you go with Ibexa Cloud you do not need to worry about any of that. The business can be sure the platform doesn’t break down and your technology partner can get on with what they’re best at, customizing the system or rolling out new functionalities.”
Ibexa and Platform.sh are commercial partners and have been collaborating since 2017. Ibexa Cloud is a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) license for the Ibexa DXP module aligned with the strategic objectives and digital maturity of the organization, be it Ibexa Content, Ibexa Experience, or Ibexa Commerce.
Crucially, an organization has a single vendor for the DXP and for the cloud-hosting services delivered by Platform.sh.
Platform.sh is an important player in this space. Employing some 400 people across 37 countries, allowing a “follow the sun” support model, Platform.sh works with every major DXP vendor and provider of cloud computing services.
“We don't own data centers,” Rollin explains. “We are not providers but rely on hosting partners such as AWS, GCP, Microsoft Azure, and OVH, a French provider. We use their architecture to add our software layer, and to add value for the user over and above what they would have experienced if they had used AWS or Google Cloud Computing directly, or through a rival cloud-hosting platform.”
This added value drives the commercial logic of Ibexa Cloud.
The added value of Ibexa Cloud
PaaS implementations have all kinds of advantages but the Ibexa/ Platform.sh partnership has an additional and unique benefits that Rollin wants to highlight:
Integrated customer support
“The integrated offer we have works very well, and what makes it stand out is that we’ve integrated our support. If there is a problem you wouldn’t necessarily know if it’s to do with the cloud infrastructure or with Ibexa DXP. But there is just one ticket to submit. There is none of this pillar-to-post stuff which is such a massive source of friction in customer support.
“You submit a ticket to Ibexa Cloud and our support teams work hand in hand to investigate the problem and assign it to the right party.”
“We signed the Climate Act last year,” says Rollin, “and that commits us to halving our carbon emissions by 2030. As part of that commitment, we audit, measure and work on our own energy consumption and that of our clients.”
Platform.sh has already made significant strides in shrinking its carbon dioxide footprint; it achieves this through the way it allocates server capacity.
Overall, a 9 time average CO2 emission reduction has been measured by third-parties, for clients adopting Platform.sh (aka Ibexa cloud). This is mainly due to our MODE strategy.
- Measure: We realized a carbon audit as a starting point
- Optimize: We run high-density workloads on the cloud
- Deploy: We allow our clients to choose their hosting region by carbon intensity
- Educate: We educate ourselves and are communicating with the larger community
“To implement our high density architecture, we take different AWS, Azure or other servers and we split them into what we call containers . As we have many clients whom we manage at scale across a lot of containers, on a very regular basis an agent is monitoring the allocation of those container resources for our clients, and is dynamically allocating it to have the optimal allocation in terms of density.
“This effect is transformative. We have a density of data center cell usage that is much higher than is typical in standard architecture. Usually, servers use up to 20-30% of their capacity but Platform.sh uses them at more than 80%, without loss of performance, of course.
“This is not so much a ‘sustainability message’ as a real commitment to sustainability which we pass on to our partners,” Rollin adds.
Continuous code optimization
“Code optimization supports our sustainability commitment. We give developers a very advanced tool to help them make their code more efficient, which means that instead of bringing in new servers, they can make their code less bloated.”
In 2021, Platform.sh acquired Blackfire, the only fully integrated application performance profiling, testing, monitoring, and optimization suite for web sites and applications. The solution comes as standard with Ibexa Cloud implementations.
“Blackfire has a tool called Profiler which gives developers the ability to scan the code and to detect everything that can be optimized. Resource usage is incredibly hard to track as a developer, Blackfire Profiler gives you that insight but more importantly, it will always tell you what you need to do to make your code better.”
Faster and more secure development
All PaaS implementations enable developers to work in parallel on the code without affecting production. It is this gain in flexibility and agility that accounts for the rapid adoption of cloud computing.
Platform.sh takes it to the next level in two ways.
“I'm a developer, I am working on a new feature – on the side, so to speak. I can click on a button to generate a URL which I forward to the marketer, an internal URL of course. The marketer can see exactly what the new feature looks like and give me feedback, so it’s a great way to work together.
“We like to say that Platform.sh is marketer-friendly, because it’s so easy for them to interact with the development, because you give these previews.”
As mentioned earlier, developers can work independently on the product code without disrupting the production. However, this does not guarantee that the release of the new code into production goes off without a hitch. Platform.sh’s cloning feature resolves this issue, as Rollin explains.
"This is how it works,” he says. “You take the production, you click on a button to create a clone not only of the code but of the data too, as well as the service and the infrastructure. When you do your release and push it into production, you’re absolutely sure that it’s going to work because it’s the exact same infrastructure that is already in production.
“This fear that people have to deploy something before the weekend, it’s about this. Okay, the code is working on staging but when I push it to production it all falls down because the infrastructure isn’t the same. The cloning feature in Platform.sh gets around that and secures your release, whatever day of the week it is!”
“And so developers can work faster and better, and not worry about things going wrong. It really speeds up time to market.”
The return on investment of Ibexa Cloud
A Forrester Total Economic Impact report from March 2022 evaluated the potential return on investment of Platform.sh for “a composite organization” operating globally with an e-business model. This organization “has been a Platform.sh customer for three years and uses Platform.sh to develop, deploy, host, and secure all its websites and web applications”, the analyst explains.
Of course not a single organization is a composite, so actual ROI will vary from business to business. But the organization modeled by Forrester achieves a return of 219% after three years. We cite two more findings from what is a very detailed and comprehensive report: Platform.sh cuts IT and DevOps operating costs by $1 million over those three years, and break-even point is reached after as little as seven months.
Almost as interesting as these numbers are the benefits that Forrester did not and could not quantify, but which are experienced by every user of Platform.sh. We have looked at most of these benefits in our note: faster time-to-market with innovation, real-time deployment, greater stability, enhanced data security, greater flexibility, and having a solution that is built to scale.
It may be that these unquantifiable benefits outweigh financial considerations because an organization that cannot innovate quickly will soon fall behind and see its market share erode.
For this and many other reasons Ibexa DXP is proud to be partnering with Platform.sh.
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