India-based Screen-Magic provides a native, enterprise texting application called SMS-Magic, which customers integrate with their customer relationship management (CRM) systems such as Salesforce and Zoho. Once integrated, SMS-Magic—a software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution—automates much of the text-messaging communications that go on as part of an organization’s CRM processes. Currently, more than 1,500 businesses across 190 countries are using SMS-Magic to win and retain customers and drive revenue. Today, SMS-Magic is the most highly rated enterprise texting application in the Salesforce.com’s AppExchange store.
Since migrating to AWS, we have been able to increase DevOps resourcing by 300%.”
Co-Founder and CTO, Screen-Magic
Because the cloud service provider supporting SMS-Magic lacked key certifications, Screen-Magic found it challenging to convince companies—particularly enterprises—to adopt the SMS-Magic service. “The certifications that customers most often required were SOC 2 and ISO 27001,” says Sandip More, co-founder and chief technology officer at Screen-Magic, “and at the time our cloud service provider didn’t have them.” Besides the certification issues, Screen-Magic felt the access management features for its cloud infrastructure weren’t robust enough. “We didn’t get the granular control over access that we wanted, weakening our security,” comments More.
Screen-Magic decided to look for another cloud solution. The company, however, didn’t want to move to a cloud service provider that simply resolved its certification issues. “We wanted to engage with a cloud service provider that could help us improve our operations more broadly,” says Sandip More, co-founder and chief technology officer at Screen-Magic. This included reducing latency and automating as many management processes as possible, so that Screen-Magic could dedicate more resources to DevOps.
Around the same time that Screen-Magic was looking for a replacement cloud service provider, SMS-Magic became the leading enterprise texting application on Salesforce.com. “It was a great opportunity to drive sales, particularly in the United States, so we wanted to engage with a cloud service provider that could offer us servers in that country,” says More.
Why Amazon Web Services
Screen-Magic saw that Amazon Web Services (AWS) offered the certifications it wanted while also offering the services to meet Screen-Magic’s broader goals of improving operations. “We saw that AWS was compliant with SOC 2 and ISO 27001 standards that would ensure the security of our cloud environment,” comments More. In addition, More says that AWS could give Screen-Magic the granular access control it was looking for with AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM), which ensures secure access to AWS services.
Screen-Magic IT engineers built a test environment on AWS for the SMS-Magic service. “Because we had studied a lot about the AWS Cloud, we found it easy to set up the environment,” comments More. “We found that SMS-Magic performed better on the AWS Cloud than the previous cloud infrastructure, and the AWS platform was easier to scale. These factors, plus the security and disaster recovery capabilities of AWS, helped us decide in favor of migrating SMS-Magic entirely to the AWS Cloud.”
Screen-Magic runs the SMS-Magic application and web servers on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instances. The company uses Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) for storing data such as multimedia content for customers’ enterprise text messages. Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS) provides a MySQL database in the cloud for the SMS-Magic application. Says Srinivasan, “Amazon RDS provides the foundation for our SMS-Magic service—it’s crucially important. All the data relating to SMS-Magic application is stored in Amazon RDS, so it needs to be highly available at all times.”
Screen-Magic is attracting more customers—particularly multinational enterprises—because the AWS Cloud underpinning SMS-Magic has the certifications that organizations need. As well securing the certifications, Screen-Magic is also gaining better performance from SMS-Magic because of the lower network latency of AWS compared with the previous cloud infrastructure. “By migrating to AWS, we have reduced latency by around 30 percent,” comments More. “This makes SMS-Magic that much more responsive for our clients, which in turn improves their customer’s experience.”
In addition, Screen-Magic is highly satisfied with the simplified management of AWS compared with its previous cloud service provider because it allows Screen-Magic to allocate more resources on DevOps. “Basic IT management is an overhead that every business wants to avoid because it reduces the resources you can dedicate to DevOps,” says More. For Screen-Magic, the simplified management in AWS is a major benefit because it enables the business to focus on adding value to its SaaS product. “Since migrating to AWS, we have been able to increase DevOps resourcing by 300 percent thanks to the simplicity of managing and scaling our AWS environment.”
The global nature of the AWS Cloud has meant that Screen-Magic can take full advantage of its status as a leading text messaging application on Salesforce.com. The AWS Cloud operates 44 Availability Zones within 16 geographic regions around the world. “From a legal perspective, we often need to host customers’ data within the country where their companies are located,” comments More. “The United States is a perfect example. Using AWS, we can drive our business in the United States because of the AWS Availability Zones based there. The same applies to Europe and India. Of course, having our servers close to our customers also helps reduce network latency and improve performance.”
Right now, Screen-Magic is looking to enhance its AWS infrastructure. The company is developing use cases for services such as AWS Lambda for serverless computing as well as AWS CodeDeploy and AWS CodePipeline to automate code delivery and application updates. “Through AWS, we are finding new ways to increase our business agility while keeping a tight control of our operating expenditure,” says More. “It’s a formula to successfully drive growth.”