CEO, AK Systems
AK Systems delivers a clinical trial SaaS application with MySQL Database Service for increased performance, scalability, and cost-efficiency.
Introduction and Background
AK Systems Inc. (AKS), founded in 1997, is an IT service and solutions company headquartered in New Jersey, United States. AKS delivers enterprise applications, custom development, infrastructure management, cloud hosting, digital marketing, clinical and eLearning solutions, and augmented reality applications to small and midsize companies around the world. AKS is focused on serving customers from the legal, financial, retail, learning, healthcare, and life sciences industries.
Following a strategic decision to focus on the healthcare industry and the increasingly remote workstyle, AKS decided to modernize healthcare data collection and digitalize the initial patient screening process. The company also built a dedicated clinical trial application to collect and analyze clinical data, which it is planning to move from on-premises to the cloud, as part of their modernized Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) offering.
Business Challenges and Goals
AKS' healthcare customers—clinics and insurance companies—struggled with poor performance when running complex queries against years' worth of medical data, which meant analyzing 10 to 12 terabytes of information. A solution was needed to speed up the search and overall performance of AKS' SaaS application with increasing data loads and ensure on-demand scalability.
Data optimization for reporting purposes was a key challenge since AKS wanted to offer their customers easier, faster, and more secure access to patient and medical records. "It's not acceptable in today's business environment that end users have to wait 10 minutes for a report. They need to get a report much faster," Manoj Hathi said.
From a return on investment standpoint, AKS did not consider on-premises infrastructure as a long term solution. Converting their offering into a SaaS model also required AKS to upgrade to the latest database technology to eliminate the costs and risks of Extract-Transform-Load (ETL) operations and offer customers the best experience.
Business Results and Metrics
AKS moved from an on-premises MySQL Community Edition to MySQL Database Service. HeatWave, MySQL Database Service's in-memory query accelerator, increased the application's search velocity by several hundred times, enabling AKS' healthcare customers to run queries against ever-growing data sets with a performance that is unmatched in the market.
MySQL Database Service with HeatWave proved to be the ideal tool for AKS' SaaS offering thanks to its ability to execute OTLP and analytical workloads - as opposed to moving it to a separate OLAP database. This saved both AKS and their customers time and money by simplifying and speeding up their work, which helped increase business agility.
At the same time, MySQL Database Service eliminated the security risks that come with moving the data between databases, since no ETL is needed. "Executing OLTP and analytics on a single database is a massive benefit. No other vendor can deliver that," says Manoj Hathi.
To accommodate customer demands for collecting more data such as patients' medical history and insurance information, scalability became a main focus area for AKS. This is why the company began considering the move to the cloud. MySQL Database Service enables AKS' customers to manage complex data from different sources in a timely and optimized manner.
By moving to MySQL Database Service, AKS ensures that their SaaS offering is powered by the latest database technology. MySQL Database Service's built-in real-time encryption provided AKS and their customers with an additional layer of security on top of Oracle Gen 2 Cloud security, helping prevent cyber threats and address potential security issues faster.
Using automated backup, monitoring, and multi-source replication of MySQL Database Service, assisted by a support team of MySQL experts, AKS now has good solutions for business continuity and disaster recovery. With built-in high availability, the company's SaaS application switches over to the second database automatically if an issue arises, which keeps latency low and prevents data loss.
With the SaaS application running on the Oracle Gen 2 Cloud, AKS' customers enjoy more flexibility in their business planning, since MySQL Database Service's pay-as-you-go pricing model does not require up-front investments.
Why MySQL Database Service?
In their decision to move to the cloud, AKS compared MySQL Database Service with Amazon Redshift and Microsoft Azure. "MySQL Database Service with HeatWave has no comparison. The performance, the ease of use, the security features, and the pricing model make it the superior product," Manoj Hathi said.
Relying on their own IT engineers who are Oracle and MySQL certified, AKS started implementing MySQL Database Service with HeatWave in March 2021. The process is still underway with only a few months to go.