Agile Cloud-Based Infrastructure Redefinition

Transforming Firehouse Subs: Cloud Migration and Modernization Success Story

The Opportunity

Firehouse Subs, a popular US restaurant chain, was running its Windows workloads on a legacy web-based platform, and leveraging a few external services to run and host the front and backend infrastructure of their online ordering system.

Development and deployment of new features was cumbersome, with long, drawn-out manual processes. There was no well drawn out process around configuration management. In addition, the entire web infrastructure was susceptible to common web exploits and basic DoS attacks.

Major Challenges:

  • The aging legacy infrastructure meant it was becoming increasingly difficult & costly to maintain and/or update.
  • High costs due to lack of scalability.
  • The risk of a single point of failure was high due to more than one application hosted on a single server i.e. system failures could not be isolated.
  • Lack of enterprise grade security mechanisms, which increased the risk of data breach or loss.

With these challenges in mind, Firehouse Subs selected SourceFuse as its technology partner to provide consultation and propose a roadmap to migrate its legacy platform to the cloud.

The Solution

After carrying out a detailed assessment, SourceFuse proposed to migrate and modernize their Windows workloads on AWS Cloud, leveraging AWS Auto Scaling to handle the spikes in traffic during peak times. As part of its modernization-led migration approach, SourceFuse put forward a roadmap that would redefine the client’s infra deployment, leveraging S3 to host frontend (end-user facing application) and EC2 instances for backend APIs.

SourceFuse worked to model and provision all the resources needed for the client’s website and online ordering process through a single text file. Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) pipelines to use Infrastructure-as-Code (IaC) enabled quick, effortless, and accurate code deployment, and the ability to launch additional infrastructure services. Additionally, utilizing a multi-AZ environment would eliminate the ‘single point of failure’ challenge.

The Results

The resulting modernization-led cloud migration of the entire Firehouse Subs platform has provided one of the world’s largest restaurant chains evolve from its slow, expensive and hard-coded ordering portal to a dynamic showroom with next-level service and end-to-end performance optimization.

Implementing a range of AWS and third-party cloud services and tools, redefining the infrastructure and creating an agile cloud-based system has brought many benefits, including:

  • Speed of deployment:  designing IaC has reduced the frequency of deployment of new code from three months to three weeks.
  • Ease of management:  robust data access management controls for compliance and auditing purposes, with the power to organize and visualize data effectively to support cost optimization.
  • Improved Scalability:  the infrastructure is now highly scalable through the use of AWS Auto Scaling, which automatically scales with demand.
  • Increased availability:  deploying the infrastructure across multiple availability zones (multi-AZ) creates a highly available, durable database. Automatic corrective actions ensure zero data loss and no requirement for manual intervention.
  • Enhanced security:  implementing AWS WAF (web application firewall) helps protect against common cyberattacks, with the ability to monitor specific traffic patterns.
At first, we thought it may be out of our budget to utilize SourceFuse as a vendor. We figured ‘How hard could it be?’. After working with the SourceFuse team, we believe that this was a valuable investment for Firehouse Subs. From start to finish, the team was thorough and provided incredible professionalism. We couldn’t have asked for a better experience.
Shelly Walsh
Director of Franchise Programs, Firehouse Subs®

About The Customer

Firehouse Subs® is a restaurant chain with a passion for hearty and flavorful food, heartfelt service and public safety. Founded in Jacksonville, Florida in 1994 by two brothers and former firefighters, Firehouse Subs is a brand built on decades of fire and police service, hot and hearty subs piled high with the highest quality meats and cheeses and its commitment to saving lives through the establishment of the non-profit Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation®.

Driven by the passion of more than 400 Firehouse Subs franchisees to serve their local communities, for the fourth consecutive year, based on recent Technomic Insight consumer data, Firehouse Subs was named the No.1 brand in the restaurant industry that “Supports Local Community Activities.” Today, Firehouse Subs has over 1,200 locations open with hundreds more in the works. As Firehouse Subs continues to grow, it remains focused on building and sustaining a strong business for its area representatives and franchisees.

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