Shriram Housing Finance Moves to AWS to Reduce RTO/RPO by 30 per cent

Shriram Housing Finance

Shriram Housing Finance Limited (SHFL) maintains high availability for mission-critical Windows applications by shifting to AWS. SHFL offers mortgages for the acquisition or building of residential property.

In India, housing sales for the first quarter of 2022 were the most since 2015. Work-from-home opportunities and lower loan interest rates are only two of the factors motivating Indians to invest in better homes. Shriram Housing Finance Limited (SHFL), a registered member of India’s National Housing Bank, has been offering loans for the purchase or building of residential spaces since 2011. Its objective is to assist people acquire their ideal home.

SHFL has evolved its product offerings and experienced strong annual growth since its beginnings. Shriram Capital owns the company, which is a subsidiary of the Shriram Group, a varied finance and real-estate conglomerate with over 70,000 people that has been serving consumers for nearly five decades.

Shriram Group‘s IT needs were being met by an on-premises data centre, but the company sought to pursue new business use cases enabled by the cloud, such as sophisticated analytics for SHFL and other divisions such as Shriram Automall. “As we’ve evolved, it’s become increasingly important to create efficiencies through technology and innovate to fulfil our clients’ expectations,” says Sendil Kumar Venkatesan, Chief technology officer of Shriram Capital Ltd. As a result, the Group chose SHFL to pilot their cloud adventure.

SHFL launched their cloud migration journey in December 2020. When choosing a cloud provider for an ISO 27001-certified financial services organisation, security and high availability (HA) were top objectives. SHFL chose Amazon Web Services (AWS) due to the platform’s Multi-AZ architecture and suite of cloud-native security capabilities. SHFL also aimed to improve disaster recovery (DR) by lowering the recovery time objective (RTO) and recovery point objective (RPO) (RPO).

Sendil Kumar Venkatesan, Chief Technology Officer, Shriram Capital Ltd, says, “The infrastructure solutions we’ve implemented from AWS have resulted in increased performance, availability, reliability, and scalability.”

SHFL collaborated with AWS Partner Rapyder and participated in the AWS Migration Acceleration Program to help with migration (MAP). SHFL transferred 11 mission-critical apps from more than 20 servers to AWS using MAP technologies to decrease costs and automate execution, as well as personalised training approaches. Core IT operations, mobile, web portals, and finance applications were among those moved.

“AWS MAP has been instrumental in helping us move workloads from on premises to the cloud in a cost-optimized manner,” says Sendil Kumar.

In addition to application servers, the company uses Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) to host its Microsoft SQL Server database and AWS Managed Microsoft Active Directory (AD) to control network resource access. As a fully managed HA storage solution, it also employs Amazon FSx for Windows File Server. SHFL uses Amazon FSx’s failover clustering functionality to reduce storage costs while maintaining availability. DR has also improved, with RTOs and RPOs on the AWS Cloud decreasing by 30%.

SHFL relies on Amazon Machine Images to simplify the acquisition of Amazon EC2 instances (AMIs). The organisation provides preconfigured AMIs that may be specified when launching an instance, reducing the time and effort needed to deploy new resources. “The ease of deploying AMIs was really useful to us because we were used to the legacy way of creating instances in virtual machines, where storage and compute have to be manually configured each time,” Sendil Kumar explains.

“One of the major challenges we faced in the data center was scaling up storage quickly to meet rising business volumes. After migrating to Amazon S3, our scaling challenges were resolved and we can retrieve huge volumes of data within minutes,” says Sendil Kumar.

The company must comply to high compliance standards, due to which data security, threat detection and response were areas that concerned SHFL about cloud migration. Since then, it has implemented tools such as Amazon GuardDuty for intelligent threat detection and Amazon CloudTrail to audit user activities and detect and respond to security problems.

Shriram Group has converted another firm, Shriram Automall, to AWS as a result of the success of SHFL’s conversion. It also intends to relocate other divisions, with a hybrid cloud infrastructure planned for all divisions. Sendil Kumar concludes, “Overall, the infrastructure solutions we’ve implemented from AWS have resulted in increased performance, availability, reliability, and scalability.”

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