Case Study: Inland Bank

Inland Bank profits from managed services partnership with Commvault® and Ubistor

The challenges

  • Legacy provider lacked flexibility; bank didn’t have access to its own environment
  • Lengthy backups and missed SLAs around Exchange backups
  • Ineffective communication with legacy services provider; wasn’t a true partnership
  • Time to restore a file could take up to two weeks and too often was not successful

The solution

  • UbiStor and Commvault® software

The benefits

  • Can demonstrate the ability to achieve acceptable Recovery Time Objectives (RTO) and Recovery Point Objectives (RPO) to auditors
  • Faster backups with 100 percent restore rate
  • Reduced overhead, lower staff costs due to having a managed services provider
  • Well positioned in terms of data management for future anticipated growth
  • Strategic, trusted advisor three- way partnership fosters flexibility and effective communication

The merger of three community banks in 2008 led to the formation of Inland Bank and Trust Company, and resulted in the addition of eight locations, bringing the total to eleven, all in the Oak Brook, Ill., vicinity. With a goal to deliver first-class banking services to all individuals, families and businesses within the communities it serves, Inland Bank realized that its growth from a $300 million to a $1.3 billion institution required an upgraded data and information management solution that could scale to accommodate future growth or additional acquisitions.

Inland Bank found that its legacy service provider, using Symantec Backup Exec, wasn’t agile enough to handle the bank’s increasing data growth and protection needs. According to Petar Zivovic, assistant vice-president of information technology at Inland Bank, “I wasn’t afforded the flexibility I needed to step in and handle issues as they arose. There was one instance, for example, when I needed to see what was happening within my own virtual infrastructure when a server was misbehaving, and I was told I couldn’t do it. Being denied access to my own environment certainly didn’t sit right with me.” The previous vendor’s ineffective communication and lack of flexibility, along with missed SLAs around Exchange backups forced Inland Bank to consider service provider alternatives. What the bank was really seeking was a true partner, rather than a provider who just “ran things.”

After careful consideration, Inland Bank chose Commvault partner and service provider UbiStor because its expertise is data management — hosting and managing datacenters. With UbiStor, the bank achieved a true partnership, along with the ability to scale based on anticipated future growth. Zivovic also appreciates the visibility he has into his own environment, having received the training he needed to address issues as they arise, if necessary. With trust in UbiStor’s recommendation to deploy Commvault® software as its data protection and management solution, Inland Bank is certainly turning profits from this three-way partnership.

The single biggest benefit of the Commvault software and UbiStor managed services solution is that it works on all levels. It gets our information protected consistently well, in the time allotted, with reporting and open communication that gives us confidence we have selected the best partners for our business needs.

Petar Zivovic, Assistant Vice-President of IT, Inland Bank

If I’m being kept awake at night, it has nothing to do with my backups anymore – and that is priceless.

Petar Zivovic, Assistant Vice-President of IT, Inland Bank

Managed services provide agility and flexibility that facilitate growth

Since bringing in UbiStor and Commvault as its combined data management solution, Inland Bank is assured that it can scale its infrastructure up or down, whether the bank grows organically, it acquires another institution or it is acquired by someone else. Inland Bank’s previous solution was only able to perform on an in-house setup with off-site tape archiving for DR; with Commvault software, future growth plans may include outsourcing specific functions, which will only require that the bank pick up the applicable Commvault server and outsource it as well.

Inland Bank is using Commvault software to back up a critical proprietary application that runs on a SQL database server and holds all account history, such as customer statements, reports, etc. The software is also backing up the bank’s customer relationship management system (CRM) – a SQL database running on Windows that tracks all customer communication and data; it is backed up nightly and any needed restores can be performed quickly. Other nightly backups include all branch servers, including Exchange; which send block-level changes only over the WAN.

According to Zivovic, “Backups are faster with less overhead required. Working with a managed services provider, we have been able to save on staff costs and the other overhead expenses we would have incurred in attempting to manage backups on our own.”

Meeting compliance standards with a 100% restore rate

Inland Bank is required, as a component of its risk assessment audits, to demonstrate the ability to achieve acceptable Recovery Time Objectives (RTO) and Recovery Point Objectives (RPO). For example, the Exchange server needs to be able to recover emails that have been sent and received within 24 hours; the same requirement exists for the loan documentation system. Unfortunately, the bank’s previous service provider wasn’t always able to pull the data back when it was needed.

“The time it took to recover a set of files for our mortgage division in 2010 using Symantec Backup Exec – two weeks. The same type of restore done by UbiStor using Commvault Commvault software – two minutes. It’s just incredibly more efficient and I don’t have anyone complaining about backups, getting files back or confidence issues,” Zivovic stated.
Commvault software helps Inland Bank to achieve its business line requirements with a recovery point of 24 hours for most applications and a recovery time of within 24-48 hours. This allows users to pick up where they left off and resume activity without productivity loss or disruption.

According to Zivovic, “It’s without exaggeration to say that bringing on UbiStor with CommVault makes me really confident when it comes to our audit performance and basically getting a clean bill of health. At this point when my audit takes place this year, if Commvault continues to perform the way it has, I anticipate being able to tell the auditors that our restore rate is 100 percent, which will be the first time ever that I can make that statement.”

Reporting features that ensure success, foster confidence

In addition to helping Inland Bank meet its RPO/RTO requirements, Commvault software’s reporting mechanism also provides Zivovic with the information he needs to confirm that what needed to be backed up and protected was completed successfully and if not, the reason for the failure.

Zivovic said: “On a daily basis in basically 30 seconds, over two or three emails, I learn that Commvault software did what it needed to do, and if it didn’t do it, I receive an explanation for that too. For example, when our server was backed up locally but not replicated offsite during a particular weekend, we were informed that the circuit was down all weekend. That explains the entire story and I have no need to focus any attention on it otherwise.”

Inland Bank is confident that it is well positioned for its data management and protection needs today and into the future. Lacking the in-house expertise and resources available to manage this undertaking on his own, Zivovic is confident that with UbiStor and Commvault as strategic partners and trusted advisors, his previous liabilities are now well-performing assets.