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World Wrestling Entertainment: JDE Upgrade & Amazon AWS Cloud Migration
About the Client
An organization whose members are known for their dramatic on-stage acrobatics, dropkicks, and takedowns, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) needs robust technology to run its worldwide enterprise. Unlike other major sports like basketball, baseball, football, and hockey, WWE doesn’t take a break. In fact, the sports-entertainment organization operates 52 weeks a year. Up until recently, it was using a 15-year-old version of Oracle’s JD Edwards EnterpriseOne enterprise resource planning (ERP) software suite. Ready to upgrade to the latest release of JD Edwards EnterpriseOne, and wanting to move to a cloud-hosted environment, WWE knew it was time to modernize its IT environment.
Challenges the Client Faced
Because the organization hadn’t upgraded its ERP in about 15 years, its technical upgrade had to be completed in steps. With too much of a gap between releases, GSI used a “stepping stone” approach where they had to move to prior release before moving WWE onto the latest version.
“GSI managed the entire project,” said Freeman. “They provided various technical resources for the complete database migration, set up the environment, and performed the upgrade.” WWE also needed help retrofitting some of the computer code, and particularly in cases where it had previously modified JDE objects, and where Oracle had since completely modified those objects.
“We needed to really do a retrofit and migrate all of those custom objects,” he added, “so we relied on GSI for a lot of technical expertise.”
WWE budgeted six months for the entire project and GSI helped it hit that deadline on the nose. “It was pretty much done to the day,” said Freeman, who was pleased with the results. There was minimal disruption for team members.
For WWE, GSI provided overall project management and orchestrated
all of the steps that had to be taken for both data migration (to the
cloud) and the ERP upgrade. GSI also provided the technical experts
who set up the new environment in AWS.
Wanting a seamless transition for its users, WWE avoided “layering in a whole bunch of enhancements,” said Freeman, and instead focused on replicating the look and feel of its existing system. The user interface was enhanced slightly and browser capability was expanded to include access to Google Chrome (versus just Internet Explorer).
“There were some natural user experience improvements,” said Freeman, “so we did a couple of rounds of user navigation training and were pretty much ready to go.” The switchover to the new system kicked off at 5PM on a Friday afternoon and the new system was up and running two days later. “From a user perspective, there was minimal disruption,” said Freeman. “It all went very well. ”Reflecting on GSI’s role in the projects, Freeman said WWE was pleased with its choice of partners. “It was a good working relationship. They had all of the right subject matter experts, were easy to work with, and our teams were aligned well,” said Freeman. “There were really no major pains during the implementation; it all went pretty smoothly.
After going live on the latest release of JD Edwards EnterpriseOne, WWE transitioned to GSI for JD Edwards managed services for its environment.
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