beBetter Health Casestudy

About beBetter Health

beBetter Health has been helping companies deliver successful wellness programs for over 25 years. The beBetter System helps employees take action toward improving their health, provides employers with strategies to reduce health care costs and boost employee productivity, and gives brokers everything needed to implement an effective wellness solution.

The Challenge

beBetter Health launched an initiative to build a new Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) product to better meet the changing needs of its wellness customers. For earlier web applications, beBetter Health had served its customers from its own, traditional datacenter infrastructure, which had multiple single points of failure and a history of unplanned outages. For the new product, the team wanted to focus its resources and efforts specifically on development and rapid deployment of the new applications without having to simultaneously build and support a new infrastructure.

Given the limited domain knowledge by its own staff and the need to support existing internal IT systems, beBetter Health knew it needed a partner with the solid AWS experience in order to meet its objectives for product go-to-market. beBetter Health partnered with Cascadeo Corporation due to their ability to quickly design, build, and operate a scalable, highly-available AWS infrastructure that could underpin its product performance.

Why Amazon Web Services

beBetter Health chose to build its new application services on AWS after evaluating alternatives including building its own, virtualized infrastructure. Several factors drove the decision including:

  • A low hurdle to pilot AWS features and no need for initial capital investment,
  • The richness of the AWS solution with integrated compute, tiered storage, and security solutions from a single provider,
  • The higher performance, reliability, availability, and scalability requirements mandated by the new SaaS product couple with low-cost, inter-region failover,
  • The business desire to focus on engineering product features more than infrastructure operations, and
  • An ability to leverage vendors, such as Cascadeo Corporation, as their IT services provider with deep knowledge of AWS capabilities and operations.

To achieve beBetter Health's business objectives, Cascadeo built a secure AWS VPC connected via a VPN to the legacy datacenter and migrated its production servers to an initial three-node deployment using EC2 instances. Cascadeo scaled up the infrastructure to 14 nodes using ELB and RDS to meet increasing demand across beBetter Health's services. As part of the operational strategy to take full advantage of the AWS product suite, Cascadeo has helped beBetter Health to evaluate, test, and deploy new AWS services as they become available.

The Benefits

beBetter Health has been able to keep its operating costs very low, even with many constituents putting new demand on the AWS environment. The costs do grow from month to month but can be monitored and managed effectively by beBetter Health's technical stakeholder who holds a global view of both the constituent demand and the AWS deployment. At the same time, beBetter Health has obtained better uptime, significantly reduced unplanned outages, and increased application performance leading to a better overall user experience. Lastly, AWS has given beBetter Health greater operational flexibility, which has enabled rapid revision of the production environment without wasted time and capital expense. According to beBetter Health's technical lead, "Without Cascadeo, beBetter would not have been able to achieve these results in AWS. Anybody can take a Ferrari out for a lap, but to get the most out AWS, you need someone at the wheel who knows how to drive one."