The role of automation: How TransUnion automates 1 million jobs using Ansible

The role of automation: How TransUnion automates 1 million jobs using Ansible

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As the cloud continues to gain steam, automation fits into the picture for seamless application modernization and reduction of redundant functions.

To consolidate disparate tooling and increase the delivery speed of new products and services, TransUnion LLC selected Red Hat Ansible Automation Platform to enable a move from centralized control to centralized standards and execution with distribution being made to respective teams, according to Ryan Searles (pictured), vice president of solution architecture and cloud migrations at TransUnion.

“Ansible was the answer for us because it allowed the teams to build kind of gold standard templates, gold standard playbooks, and then train each of the individual teams on how to take those and extend those for their applications so that they could run them themselves,” Searles said. “We had a milestone in May … a million automation jobs executed. So we want to do 2 million hopefully by the end of this year.”

Searles spoke with theCUBE industry analysts Paul Gillin and Rob Strechay at Red Hat Summit, during an exclusive broadcast on theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s livestreaming studio. They discussed how Ansible has been a game-changer in TransUnion’s cloud and automation journey. (* Disclosure below.)

The power of Ansible

Ansible has made TransUnion teams shift from doing all the automation to being automation enablers. As a result, best practices have emerged and teams no longer see themselves as bottlenecks, according to Searles.

“Ansible has this product called Automation Hub, which is a location of all the scripts where they live, all the different automations where they live and makes that accessible,” he noted. “It’s a combination of making the gold standards available in the Automation Hub, creating documentation that’s accessible both from an access point if you can do it yourself or being able to escalate and reach out to a team if you need help.”

Based on the recent announcements about Ansible Lightspeed and Event-Driven Ansible, TransUnion believes they will be stepping stones toward artificial intelligence evaluation. As a result, these innovations will enhance business continuity and eliminate manual interventions, Searles pointed out.

“I think the thing that we see about AI is it’s going to help us be more efficient. Instead of having to go and read or having to do this kind of learn the vernacular, learn the jargon, learn the esoteric terms … being able to have that translates into an automation that does what we needed to do. I love the Event-Driven Ansible, self-healing solution, self-healing platforms,” Searles added.

The need for role-based access

Since TransUnion is a global information and insights company that credits the true picture of people to make trust possible, it uses a hybrid approach. This is based on regulations in different jurisdictions and gives rise to role-based access, Searles pointed out.

“Now that we have automations occurring in places like the United Kingdom or you have GDPR, you have places in like in India where there’s tight regulation with the Reserve Bank of India,” he explained. “We want to have role-based access to make sure that the people in India have the control of their automations and that it isn’t questionable of who can make changes to it and it’s audited.”

Given that security was the biggest driver of TransUnion’s move to the cloud, Red Hat Consulting came in handy in this migration. The Red Hat team was also helpful in the automation journey using Ansible, according to Searles.

“I think about two values they added,” he said. “One is just the art of the possible, new to Ansible as an application deployment platform, new to the concept of distributed collaboration. They came in with expertise that helped us see all the things that we didn’t even know about, but also just Red Hat in general as an open-source company.”

Here’s the complete video interview, part of SiliconANGLE’s and theCUBE’s coverage of Red Hat Summit:

 (* Disclosure: Red Hat Inc. sponsored this segment of theCUBE. Neither Red Hat nor other sponsors have editorial control over content on theCUBE or SiliconANGLE.)

Photo: SiliconANGLE

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