For automotive manufacturers and their retailers, having the correct tools to service vehicles is essential, but maintaining and communicating current and approved lists of tooling is a challenging endeavour when the vehicle fleet is always changing and when the retailer network is distributed globally.
Together with Jaguar Land Rover and specialist automotive consultancy partner, Redsnipe, we designed a web-based application to manage current tooling and distribute information to JLR’s global network of retailers. Running since 2015 this application has delivered reliable and cost-effective distribution of JLR’s tooling information in 13 languages and for over 40 geographical regions around the world.
Originally an Excel-based process using spreadsheets and Visual Basic macros, we reverse-engineered the spreadsheet mechanics and designed the application database and user-interfaces to mimic and improve the tooling distribution process. Leveraging the power of the web platform, we designed an application that would deliver tooling information around the world, over the internet at the click of a button.
Now in its fifth year of operation, the application provides valuable services to Jaguar Land Rover, and their Retailers, such as:
- Rapid global distribution tooling information from the central source
- Audit capabilities, allowing Retailers to measure and be measured on their tooling compliance
- PDF document generation for hard copies of the outcomes of digital processes
- Aggregation of data for reporting and assurance
- Secure login and integration with in-house Single Sign-On (SSO)
Providing resilient cloud hosting infrastructure
For a heavily-used web application used globally 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, any downtime is unacceptable.
We designed and provisioned highly-redundant and resilient cloud infrastructure on Amazon Web Services (AWS), leveraging their auto-scaling, load-balanced services and multiple availability zones to ensure that no part of the application infrastructure offers a weak point. This ensures that periods of high traffic, or the failure of one component are not able to disrupt the experience of users currently working on the application.
The application is built on a LAMP stack platform (Linux / Apache / MySQL / PHP) and designed for deployment and management via Amazon Web Services. Of course, we incorporate many AWS services into the application architecture, including CloudFront, Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3), Route 53 and Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2).
Our security processes start with AWS’s Shared Responsibility Model which defines where the duty lies between Amazon’s responsibility of the security of the Cloud, and our responsibility for the security of the application in the Cloud. We build on that foundation with security principles both of the hosting architecture and the application software, applying best-practice web security techniques and auditing the application against the OWASP framework for the most prevalent and dangerous vulnerabilities.