DueCourse

DueCourse is a 7-figure funded startup that helps businesses keep their cashflow positive.

They have partnered wth all the top accounting packages, so connecting the one you use to DueCourse is simple—they automatically add your unpaid invoices.

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The Brief

We started speaking to DueCourse after a connection through one of our team. They were already using AWS and Elastic Beanstalk to orchestrate a monolithic application on a “traditional” compute based cloud environment. However, they wanted to move away from this to containers in order to start building a microservices architecture.

The DueCourse platform needed to be able to match their significant and speedy growth. Their core business helps startups and other small businesses keep a positive cash flow, so reliability is also hugely important.

DueCourse were specifically looking for someone with a wealth of AWS and Docker experience.

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The Solution

After extensive discussions with the DueCourse team we determined that the solution was an orchestrated AWS infrastructure using Terraform, including:

  • Autoscaling Amazon ECS cluster for docker workloads, to later be replaced by Kubernetes when the additional features are required
  • Continuous delivery pipeline
  • Amazon RDS for relational databases
  • Autoscaling RethinkDB cluster on AWS EC2

This was a bespoke solution on a consultancy basis. Full details can be found here.

We began by going on site at DueCourse to go over all the necessary details we’d need to begin. This included DueCourse giving us all their requirements that needed to be fulfilled.

Following this, we spent around a week designing the architecture and preparing an example of an ideal CI/CD workflow. This was then presented to the DueCourse team and finessed until they were happy to go ahead.

After the build of the infrastructure, we completed a day of on-site pair programming and training with the DueCourse team so they knew exactly how to use the new infrastructure, how to deploy new code, and how to work the finer details of the platform.

Throughout the project we liaised with DueCourse through our project management system and through a dedicated Slack channel.

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The Results

As a result of our work DueCourse’s whole infrastructure deployment process was modernised, with a plan in place for future modernisation when the need arises.

Alongside this, our help enabled them to fully transition to a microservices architecture, whilst also allowing them to build out their big data efforts.

The setup also means that DueCourse’s AWS costs are kept under control. Without management, AWS costs can quickly increase, so keeping everything reasonable was very important to us when setting up DueCourse’s account.

“Steamhaus were really flexible to our needs and we got a lot of value from the engagement. The team has a ton of experience and knew the right tools for our circumstances. We were introduced to Terraform and AWS ECS. Some time was spent educating us so that we could manage the infrastructure on our own. The changes have already had a real positive impact on our business and we’ve got a solid infrastructure that’s built to scale with our technology and customers”