Digital transformation is changing banks globally, and a new breed of digital, app-only banks are driving this disruption. Tandem is one of those top challenger digital banks in the UK, bringing new technology and service innovations to its customers.
Tandem is a mobile-only bank that’s competing against the traditional banks that have dominated UK banking for decades. Its customers interact with Tandem via their mobile apps and through a customer call centre, and they expect the highest quality digital experience.
But how does Tandem remain constantly agile and responsive to customers in an intensely dynamic market? A successful modernisation program involving a complete lift-and-shift migration to Amazon Web Services (AWS) public cloud and adoption of infrastructure as code, all successfully enabled by New Relic, is an important part of the answer.
Consolidating on the cloud and infrastructure as code
How the bank continues to grow and be closely engaged with its customers’ needs is tied to how its technology evolves and is constantly improved, as Difa Niculescu, IT director at Tandem explains: ‘We needed to be able to innovate quickly to bring those innovations to market extremely fast, and we needed to scale. These were the drivers for our modernisation journey and our adoption of new technologies. Moving to the cloud enables us to achieve our ambitions and gives us access to the latest and greatest technology. Specifically, this is how we can embrace infrastructure as code, quickly spinning up the infrastructure, environments, and apps as the need arises.’
Tandem chose AWS as its cloud vendor to consolidate all its operations from a mix of managed on-premises and multiple cloud providers onto one public cloud environment. Niculescu and his team worked out how the Tandem applications could operate within a fully automated infrastructure as code approach using AWS CloudFormation to model and provision all resources as software. The success of this paved the way to complete the migration onto AWS of the live applications and processes that now serve the bank’s customers.
New Relic played an integral role in helping Tandem approach, make, and complete this migration. As Niculescu says, ‘We were already using New Relic to give us really good visibility of our application performance monitoring. Over time this evolved to provide an overall viewpoint of our infrastructure, too. Extending this to our new AWS environment gave us the detailed viewpoints we needed.’
The migration was accompanied by the merging of the DevOps and infrastructure teams, which the shared use of New Relic also supported. Achieving a seamless integration of these skill sets was important to the successful use of AWS CloudFormation.