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How EPAM & Element Fleet Management Delivered a Scalable, Future-Ready Data Platform Solution

Element Fleet Management is a leading global fleet management company that provides a comprehensive range of services and solutions for cars, light-duty vehicles, trucks and material-handling equipment services that span the entire fleet management lifecycle

As an industry leader, Element embodies what it means to be a data-driven enterprise, leveraging its diverse, ever-growing data sources—from operational financial information to telemetry data that provides near-real-time analysis of vehicles—to expand its service offerings and meet customers’ needs. Element is continually searching for ways to deliver a superior and consistent client experience. To expand its offerings, Element adopted a dynamic growth strategy where an IT platform would play a pivotal role. The company realized it needed this platform solution to reduce costs, support scalability and improve efficiency by eliminating tasks related to on-premise hosting services.

Element approached EPAM to create a robust, scalable foundation for its global technology platform to address existing pain points, including capacity constraints, licensing costs, aging hardware and software, and data processing limitations. As a trusted partner since 2014, Element worked with EPAM to build their unified data platform, which provides a single source of truth for its internal and external clients.

Key Challenges

Due to its inability to scale, Element’s legacy enterprise data platform was no longer performing adequately as a centralized mission-critical system, which ultimately created gaps in Element’s ability to analyze extensive datasets that were vital to the company’s growth. The company needed a comprehensive data platform that could:

  • Help monitor and reduce costs
  • Scale sustainably in a way that was relative to anticipated growth in demand
  • Support business requirements for advanced analytics, business user usability, data ingestion to a central data repository, data cleansing and data consumption layers
  • Enable centralized platform monitoring
  • Act as a centralized storage location for semi-structured and non-structured data (e.g. images and licenses)
  • Allow the business to easily identify and create new KPIs and metrics

The Results

By working with EPAM to establish an enterprise-wide unified data platform, Element can now:

  • Easily make short-term improvements to meet client needs
  • Deliver on Element’s long-term business strategy and needs
  • Reduce maintenance costs by replacing its legacy NoSQL on-premise environment
  • Scale easily with its new high-performing, ACID-compliant, cloud-based RDBMS system 
  • Support more rapid technology innovation in the future thanks to a new, simplified enterprise-wide data governance model and homogenous data discovery capabilities
  • Perform updates that support operational excellence so the business can become more efficient and effective
  • Conduct reports for longer time periods to meet client needs
  • Increase speed and reduce time to analyze data and produce reports
  • Leverage new platform capabilities immediately as they are released by cloud partners
  • Quickly transition future enhancements to production-ready state

Solution Highlights

The major components of the new solution are:

Logical View
Data migration and continuous data delivery pipelines use an operational support area and enterprise authentication and authorization models, ultimately converging in one data consumption layer. This enables Element to quickly provide business analytics to its clients, allowing them to easily make vital business decisions.

Platform Data Flow
The data foundation ingests, transforms and provides data to downstream applications, as well as producing high-quality, reliable and accurate reports, allowing Element and its customers to make better data-driven decisions for their businesses.

Data Consumption
Data consumption is supported through a central data repository based on AWS’s ACID-compliant Data Warehousing as a Service (DWaaS) technology, providing business users greater flexibility and security while using the system.

Comprised of several AWS technologies, the compute layer is the most complex layer as it supports real-time, near-real-time and batch data processing via several complex algorithms, ensuring it can scale appropriately to complete computationally-intensive tasks quickly.

Network Access
To ensure the security of Element’s data, access to the platform is only allowed for known corporate users and customers. All AWS environments are provisioned out of the customer-owned AWS accounts. Perimeter security is enabled through segregation of platform resources in dedicated Virtual Private Clouds (VPCs).

Data Access 
Analytical outcomes for any datasets are protected by dedicated user roles. Data is stored and processed by the platform and is encrypted at all levels using features provided by Snowflake on AWS’s DWaaS.

Technologies used

  • AWS
  • Atlassian JIRA
  • Snowflake
  • Grafana
  • Talend
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In six weeks, EPAM worked with key Element leaders to assess our pain points, identify key use cases and objectives across all of our business areas and determined the right path forward with a completely reimagined data platform. In the ensuing 10 months, we were able to make this transition and deliver it into production seamlessly. All of our objectives were met and, in some cases, exceeded.

Jim Williamson
VP Data and Analytics, North America, Element Fleet Management


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