Credit Sense is a platform that enables consumers to safely and easily share their data and connect with services faster. The business has developed a comprehensive data aggregation and analysis solution that solves key affordability, compliance, and risk management challenges faced by lenders when assessing customers for credit and other services. Together with a frictionless consent-driven customer experience and an advanced integration suite built for developers, Credit Sense is powering real-time, data-driven credit assessment across Australia, New Zealand, and Canada.
Credit Sense Saves on AWS Bill and Achieves 80% Reduction in MTTD with New Relic
Credit Sense empowers people to leverage their data to negotiate better deals, connect with services faster, and achieve their personal goals. And they do it in a secure, consent-driven framework that provides consumers with visibility of what they’ve shared with whom, and direct agency over their consents.
Their clients in the finance industry trust Credit Sense to play a key role in their customer on-boarding process where for many, if Credit Sense is down, their sales funnel is critically affected.
“We didn’t have any tools to monitor our tech stack when we started in 2012,” recalls Lucas Daoud, Head of Business Infrastructure at Credit Sense’s Australian arm. "We thought it was a luxury—something that was out of the realm of startups like us.”
How did Credit Sense go from zero monitoring tools to reducing 26% in Amazon Web Services (AWS) costs and slashing 80% of the time it takes to diagnose problems? The answer lies in a willingness to take a risk, which paid off handsomely.
Daoud reveals that he hadn’t heard of New Relic until a newly joined technical manager suggested giving it a spin in mid-2016.
“New Relic made an instant difference, with the team going from comparatively ‘being blind’ to having full visibility,” Daoud recalls. “Everyone embraced it … staff were creating their own dashboards.
“Previously, only a couple of senior team members had been able to effectively diagnose issues. New Relic made it possible for everyone to do so,” he says.
"New Relic took us from Captain Caveman to the Jetsons in terms of what we could see. We went from a couple of guns to all the devs being able to contribute if we found something. It levelled the playing field in terms of everyone being able to diagnose issues"
Lucas Daoud, Head of Business Infrastructure, Credit Sense Australia
Deploying New Relic was extremely quick and seamless; it took less than 24 hours to get out-of-the-box functionality and dashboards set up. And instead of spending an hour to identify anomalies, it took only a few clicks to narrow down the exact time the issue occurred.
Team members "got hooked" on getting this visibility as it allowed them to fix problems much quicker—"easily knocking 80% off the time to diagnose", Daoud says.
"New Relic took us from “Captain Caveman” to “The Jetsons” in terms of what we could see. We went from a couple of guns to all the devs being able to contribute if we found something. It levelled the playing field in terms of everyone being able to diagnose issues."
Daoud recalls the first major project when New Relic made its mark—migrating from Rackspace to AWS.
He describes New Relic as being "pivotal" to the successful move.
"Our biggest concern was that there would still be some workloads running over at Rackspace that were still actively processing jobs after the cutover,” says Daoud. “As systems get complex there’s so many things that trigger activity. Having that confidence that applications were actually moving was key.”
Internally, Credit Sense embarked on a visualisation expedition to see exactly where and what it was spending money on. The company used New Relic to index all of its resources on AWS against what services they were providing to customers, and assigning an associated cost.
"For example, if we were providing a service where we extracted financial data out of a PDF, we could know exactly what it was costing us per unit and track spend daily," Daoud explains.
This daily metering allowed Credit Sense to rank all of its services from most expensive to least expensive, and sanity check each one against the value it was giving customers and the company. This provided a holistic perspective and enabled Credit Sense to reconsolidate certain services and remove unused ones. It resulted in a 26% reduction in AWS costs, enabling Credit Sense to explore other projects.
Further to a reduction in cloud costs and swift troubleshooting, New Relic has allowed the team to enhance deployment cycle times and testing by putting a deployment marker before and after to confirm if everything is correct, or if a performance-impacting change has been introduced.
New Relic has become a single source of truth for much of Credit Sense’s data. Each team can now interact with siloed data from other teams, with business decisions becoming much more data driven.
“We’ve gone from asking, 'Is our application responding in an appropriate time?' to 'Is our KPI meeting our desired threshold?',” Daoud says.