Reduction in data processing time
Reduction in data availability lag
Reduction in overall operating costs
Integra Life Sciences works to increase the availability of elective surgeries by having its medical technologies in the right place at the right time. The key to this process is data, which helps Integra’s decision-makers determine where demand is building, where products are located and how to best meet changing needs.
The COVID-19 pandemic only intensified the company’s challenges. Suddenly, lockdowns prevented Integra from sending its sales reps to stand alongside surgeons and clinicians and teach them how to get the most out of their products. So the company focused on equipping its reps with better data that would yield insights about what customers needed most and how to deliver it to them as quickly as possible. Integra strived to form a complete view of its inventory — including products on consignment — so that it could make the fullest use of its equipment at a time when uncertainty in the global supply chain was slowing down production.
Integra had a plan — but its systems wouldn’t cooperate. The company was processing data on a legacy warehouse, causing delays in making critical data on usage patterns, stock levels and quality issues available to decision-makers.
“Our traditional data warehouse would require eight to nine hours of nightly run to give us access to our data,” recalled Gurpreet Kaur, VP, IS Strategic Initiatives, Global Analytics & Division CIO at Integra Life Sciences. “For a large global business like ours, that’s not good enough. That meant our overseas decision-makers were getting their data a day or more later than the rest of us. And when you’re making decisions about medical equipment that elevates the quality of life for patients, one day makes a huge difference.”
Seeking to regain visibility into its inventory and drive growth during challenging times, Integra launched a strategic transformation. The company had been processing data on IBM DataStage, which took long hours to run and offered little flexibility. Seeking counsel on where to migrate next, Integra engaged Wipro as a strategic partner based on the firm’s credentials in data, analytics and AI.
“We appreciated Wipro’s strategic focus on cloud transformation with their FullStride Cloud services,” recalled Kaur. “We knew that their strong architecture and development capabilities on Databricks Lakehouse would guide us forward as we planned and executed our transformation.”
Integra began by building small proofs of concept across its business. The stakes were high because each of the projects involved critical inventory data that directly influenced decision-making. Integra’s goal was to make sure end users get their reports no matter what — but that the journey to those reports is faster and more efficient. So the company focused on building next-generation data pipelines, migrating its data from a legacy data warehouse to Azure Databricks, implementing DevOps and building reusable components.
In all, Integra migrated 500 data objects and built 700 data pipelines. Today, Databricks Lakehouse provides a unified platform for enterprise data warehouse, AI and machine learning, and Internet of Things. “Databricks significantly increases our ability to deliver business and technology value,” said Kaur. “We followed Databricks Bronze, Silver and Gold methodology to clean our data, and we implemented a very out-of-the-box architecture to make it all work. This was the first architecture of this magnitude I had ever implemented on Microsoft Azure, so we had questions about it. Wipro was always there to provide answers and help us execute.”
Within nine months, Integra went live on its new Databricks Lakehouse Platform. The company ran its legacy system in parallel with Databricks for three months as a precaution. “After a few months, we flipped the switch to Databricks, and since then we’ve had no open technical issues,” reported Kaur. “It was so much of an improvement that it was kind of a fantasy for us when we started comparing performance to our legacy system.”
After working with Wipro to implement Databricks, Integra began releasing its data warehouse at 3:00 AM each day instead of 6:00 AM. This change decreased the company’s data availability lag by 52%. Data is now available much sooner for the daily Salesforce refresh as well as for Power BI and other downstream systems.
“When you’re talking about surgeries, every day matters,” said Kaur. “Our international offices are now getting their data first thing in the morning when they still have time to make decisions, execute on those decisions and get results for patients.”
Integra’s end-to-end enterprise data warehouse processing journey used to take 16 hours. The same sequence now takes just five hours — a 69% reduction in processing time.
With Databricks, Integra has also reduced its virtual machine footprint by 46%. “We’ve not only eliminated 21 virtual machines but also reduced the security threat that they represent,” explained Kaur. “We’ve also streamlined the amount of patching and upgrades our engineering team must perform. With Azure and Databricks, we’ve essentially set up a platform-as-a-service system that we don’t have to maintain.”
Integra has also reduced its data warehouse loading time by 60%, reduced its software costs by 50% and slashed its overall operating costs by 45%. The company is funneling these savings into providing even better care.
“Our new data warehouse frees up time and resources for us to focus on developing new products and services that will help us drive revenue growth and enhance our profitability,” concluded Kaur. “When we want to add more modules to support our growth, it’s no longer a nightmare as it was on our old system. We can simply add more clusters and run more jobs in parallel. All of this enables us to provide a superior customer experience.”