Case Study

Candid: Bringing a smile to its cloud infrastructure

Client
Candid
Industries
Healthcare
Technologies
Amazon S3, Amazon SageMaker, AWS, AWS EC2
Region
North America, USA
Country
USA
Customer Quote

16%

Savings on overall cloud spend

55%

Reduction in monthly cloud bill

83%

RDS cost reduction

Meet Candid

Candid was founded to offer transformative oral health care. Through best-in-class technology and its innovative approach to partnership, Candid aims to make the highest quality care accessible, approachable, and achievable for dental professionals and their patients.

The company’s flagship product, the CandidProTM orthodontic system, is a comprehensive orthodontic solution customized to the needs of general dentists—bringing more clinical predictability, workflow efficiency, and profitability to clear aligner providers of all experience levels. CandidPro’s unique combination of turnkey treatment technology, leading-edge remote CandidMonitoring™, and direct clinical support from US-licensed orthodontists enables them to handle more clear aligner cases and drive excellent patient outcomes.

The challenge

Candid aimed to eliminate wasted AWS cloud spend and leverage technical expertise both for cost optimization, as well as ways to explore new technologies to enhance its product for customers. The company stores a lot of information, including dental records, scans, and photography, and needed to significantly reduce the costs of its AWS cloud storage. One of the main costs was the size of its RDS database, where Candid was significantly over-provisioning. This was incurring unnecessary expenditures which could have been used on other projects.

The solution

Candid searched for a digital partner to help manage its cloud spend, and was impressed with DoiT’s eagerness to reach out and offer insightful advice before the two companies had an official working relationship. DoiT offered Candid an in-depth analysis of immediate cost savings and long-term engineering benefit, ensuring that the company could confidently hit its goals.

Candid also found DoiT’s in-depth knowledge of the cloud landscape useful in helping it develop new ideas and stay up to speed with AWS. “The world of AWS is growing so quickly, it’s hard to keep up. It’s good to have someone we can bounce ideas off. The team is really on top of AWS and they can give us great suggestions on various topics,” says Tony Bussieres, Staff DevOps Engineer at Candid.

DoiT’s expertise convinced the Candid team to adopt DoiT Flexsave™ and begin working with DoiT to find the savings it needed across the board.

Automated savings with Flexsave

Candid wanted to identify any savings it could make on its AWS usage. DoiT recommended Flexsave, which automatically identifies and applies discounted rates to any of Candid’s AWS EC2 workloads not already covered by commitments. Candid’s small team no longer has to spend hours each week reconfiguring their compute workloads or monitoring their commitments to make sure it is always getting the best available price.

Redesigning storage solutions with CRE expertise

When Candid began working with DoiT, it used a large RDS database to run the application that dentists use to submit patient cases. This was running up considerable costs for the company. After talking with DoiT’s Cloud Reliability Engineers (CRE), the Candid team decided to reduce its RDS container size, significantly reducing the spend on its RDS database.

The DoiT CREs also helped Candid manage its Amazon S3 storage costs. Candid has a huge amount of patient records that it legally cannot delete for 8-10 years. This was creating significant storage costs. DoiT CREs figured out that there was a default setting in Candid’s system that was keeping old versions of files, even though the company only needed to retain the latest one.
“DoiT showed us how to use one tool in AWS to see that data and help us set up a lifecycle policy to remove the old versions,” says Bussieres. “There was no impact on the customers, no impact on the legal side. The CREs helped us reduce our S3 costs with insights that would have been difficult for us to make, because we are a small team.”

Building more efficient cloud infrastructure

Candid then worked with DoiT to optimize its cloud usage, focusing on removing inefficiencies in its infrastructure. DoiT Cloud Navigator enabled the Candid team to explore in depth what was happening across its cloud infrastructure, focus on cost reduction, and identify possible savings across the business.

With Cloud Analytics, Candid can now identify rising costs as they emerge, as opposed to reviewing them after they’ve been incurred, helping it to quickly identify savings and take action. “I use the dashboard every day, and then I will spend part of the day in the reports. I really like the multiple custom reports and their flexibility,” says Bussieres.

Cutting out cost anomalies

Candid can now also identify cost anomalies in its cloud usage, with the help of DoiT Cloud Navigator’s Anomaly Detection feature. This alerts the Candid team to unexpected cost spikes, allowing them to take fast remedial action to help keep costs under control.
“We have spotted several cost anomalies during the past year. There was an instance that cost $1,000 a day just because something was poorly configured. DoiT was quick to help us investigate it, pinpoint the problem, and stop the bleeding,” says Bussieres.

Helping build innovative use cases with AI

When Candid noticed dentists were spending considerable time manually inserting patients’ dental images into their system, Candid used Amazon Sagemaker to create an AI-powered tool to select the images automatically which has drastically reduced the time required for case submissions: improving efficiency by reducing 1-5 minutes per case. DoiT worked with the Candid team to help develop the proof of concept and adhere to AWS best practices. DoiT also helped Candid to secure R&D credits from AWS, saving the company thousands of dollars on its Sagemaker costs. Moving forward, they will also be able to benefit from Flexsave in its SageMaker usage as well, using the same type of 1-year commitment discounts that they get on their EC2 workloads.

The result

16% reduction on cloud spend with Flexsave

Since using Flexsave to automatically secure committed-use discounts, Candid has reduced its overall cloud spend by 16%.

55% reduction in monthly cloud bill after cost optimizations

After running cost optimization workshops on many services with DoiT, Candid was able to cut its monthly cloud spend by more than half.

Significant savings on data storage costs

With the help of DoiT CREs the Candid team identified considerable savings on their AWS storage costs. “With DoiT we were able to fine tune what we really needed, and what we didn’t need. And that has helped us keep our costs at a normal level,” says Bussieres.

What's next?

With DoiT, Candid receives expert advice on how to develop the most robust, efficient cloud infrastructure, while keeping costs down. The company is now looking at moving its Amazon ECS workload to Graviton, an ARM processor. Candid will be working with DoiT to facilitate the move and keep costs down.

“We signed with DoiT last year. We have an integrated messaging channel with the team, so we can communicate quickly. It’s been a very smooth ride so far,” says Bussieres.

Tony Bussieres, Staff DevOps Engineer at Candid
“As a customer, the fact we have someone we can rely on, who has our back, is very reassuring. With Cloud Navigator, DoiT provides technology that helps us manage costs, and it also provides really helpful customer service.”

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