About the Customer

Yale School of Medicine was founded in 1810, making it the sixth oldest medical school in the United States. With more than 1,200 Yale physicians provide care to patients from across the region and around the world, and Yale School of Medicine is widely regarded as a world-renowned center for biomedical research, education and advanced health care. 

Yale School of Medicine

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Azure IaaS 

Azure PaaS 

Azure VMs 

SQL Database 

Azure Web App 

Redis Cache 

Azure Storage 

Traffic Manager

Django 

Python

Business Challenge

The School of Medicine's Web Group is a seven-person team that includes strategists, project managers, developers, implementers and support specialists. This small team provides both the planning and initiatives for the Yale School of Medicine and supports more than 600 websites and seven major systems. This includes Flyerboard, an interactive touch screen designed to distribute up-to-date information through various channels, such as event listings, social media, local guides and people search throughout the medical school’s campus.

The software that drives Flyerboard comprises a Django web framework that was built using the Python programming language. It uses a virtual machine (VM) topology requiring two servers — an application server and a caching server, and it is replicated across development, staging and production environments. Additionally, the software is supported by a Microsoft SQL database and a caching server written in .NET. 

Hosted in a data center on virtual servers, the cost of maintaining the infrastructure was labor intensive, requiring constant maintenance and support from the Yale ITS (Information Technology Services) team. In order to scale the solution, the school would have had to invest in new infrastructure, which would have been time consuming and labor intensive. 

 

The SNP Solution

  • After receiving the Web Group’s approval, SNP assembled its team of developers, SQL specialists, and Azure architects to confirm the feasibility of hosting the Flyerboard on the Microsoft Azure Platform.
  • The SNP team also determined the size and capacity of Azure workloads such as the SQL database service level, VM size for the caching server and resource needs for an Azure Web App to replace the on-premise application server.
  • After the preliminary steps were completed, SNP provided the Web Group with a production solution that included development, staging and production sites that combine Azure PaaS (platform as a service) and Azure IaaS (infrastructure as a service) and utilize Azure Web App, SQL database, VM, Redis Cache and storage.

Customer Benefits

The Yale School of Medicine Flyerboard users experienced a visible improvement in the performance and rendering of the data on the screen compared with the on-premise server-based infrastructure they had been using previously. The client reports, also, that the Azure consumption cost is lower by about 20% than the data center costs and SNP was able to cut out a VM by leveraging the Azure Web App service for the application. 

 

“SNP has been a tremendous asset in the transition of our digital signage. Their team has both breadth and depth with Azure and it’s many offerings”

Justin Fansler, Technology Director, Yale School of Medicine