April 2, 2024

Rapyd's Journey to Cost Efficiency and Improved Performance: Strategic Kubernetes Optimization with PerfectScale

Brendan Cooper
Head of Marketing

Rapyd stands out in the fintech landscape by unifying payment technologies and networks into a single platform. They enable businesses to accept, process, and disburse payments globally, supporting over 100 countries for payments acceptance and facilitating payouts in over 190 countries. 

Their services facilitate sending and receiving funds across the globe, integrating numerous payment methods, and issuing both virtual and physical cards. Additionally, Rapyd simplifies financial operations including money management and foreign exchange, alongside creating virtual accounts to streamline global commerce operations.

Integrating Kubernetes: A Strategic Move for Growth and Efficiency

Kubernetes plays a critical role in Rapyd's infrastructure, enabling the fintech leader to maintain fast response times which are uniquely crucial in the payment industry. As Rapyd experiences rapid growth, the scalable and dynamic nature of Kubernetes, particularly through AWS EKS across more than 15 clusters, supports their expanding needs. This technology allows Rapyd to swiftly onboard new services and address customer requests efficiently.

Team dynamics and cloud strategy

Rapyd's DevOps group, that spans across three teams—CI/CD, Infrastructure, and Site Reliability Engineering (SRE)—leverages PerfectScale for optimizing their Kubernetes environment. Boris Isakov, a DevOps Team leader and the Technical Kubernetes Lead, plays a key role in overseeing Kubernetes-related activities, ensuring the teams effectively manage their cloud resources.

Challenges and strategic optimization

The transition from EC2 to EKS presented Rapyd with a unique set of challenges. The primary goal was to optimize the cloud environment for cost and performance without compromising on the resilience essential for fintech operations. Initially, Rapyd's migration strategy prioritized safety and stability. When services were moved to Kubernetes resources were purposely over-provisioned to ensure availability, however, the team knew this was preventing them from leveraging the full benefits that come with the elasticity of Kubernetes. They attempted to utilize observability solutions for environment right-sizing, but soon realized that these tools fell short in providing the granularity needed for effective optimization.

“The initial implementation of PerfectScale to our global environments was a revelation. It exposed the extent of our resource wastage and unnecessary expenditure.” explained Isakov. “This realization was eye-opening; we discovered that our provisioning had been excessive across nodes, pods, and clusters, revealing a significant deviation from Kubernetes best practices. We decided to proceed with a Proof of Concept with PerfectScale, embarking on a path to efficient scaling and optimization.”

Improving performance while significantly reducing cost

The incorporation of PerfectScale into Rapyd's optimization workflow marked a pivotal shift in their approach to Kubernetes management. PerfectScale's suite of tools, including PodFit for workload right-sizing and InfraFit for selecting optimal node types, empowered Rapyd to refine their resource utilization. 

The implementation of PerfectScale transformed Rapyd's approach to cloud resource management, leading to a significant reduction in operational costs. By integrating PerfectScale early in their service lifecycle—letting new services run for a few days before conducting an evaluation and optimization cycle—Rapyd capitalized on the tools provided, such as PodFit for workload right-sizing and InfraFit for optimal node selection. 

This strategic utilization of PerfectScale's capabilities is projected to achieve a 35-40% reduction in cloud spending upon completion of their migration and optimization efforts. This substantial cost savings highlights the power of PerfectScale's analytics and recommendations in fostering a more cost-effective, efficient infrastructure in the fintech sector.

Performance optimization 

Beyond the financial gains, the optimization efforts facilitated by PerfectScale had a profound impact on the performance of Rapyd's services. By meticulously adjusting resource allocations in line with PerfectScale's insights, Rapyd is streamlining its operations while improving performance and reliability of its payment processing platform.

"We understood that it's not all about the cost. It's about the performance of the cluster. We started with the main feature of PerfectScale, which is the recommendation of resource requests and limits. The cost is going down, and performance is getting better."

Proactive issue resolution

One of the standout features of PerfectScale that Rapyd leveraged was its advanced alerting system. This capability allows Rapyd to proactively identify and address potential issues within their Kubernetes environment before they can affect service quality. By integrating PerfectScale's alerts into their operational workflows, Rapyd ensures continuous service reliability and uptime, essential attributes in the fintech sector where even minor disruptions can have significant repercussions for users. 

"We got alerts from PerfectScale that we did not get from our other observability solutions, including out-of-memory issues that were critical. The pre-configured alerts and their categorization by severity in PerfectScale, especially with the integration with Slack, allowed us to address issues more proactively across our complete environment."

Partnership and professional guidance

The collaboration between Rapyd and PerfectScale goes beyond a traditional vendor-client relationship; it is a strategic partnership characterized by mutual learning and shared goals. The PerfectScale team provides support and expertise, guiding Rapyd through the intricacies of Kubernetes optimization with a hands-on approach. PerfectScale’s deep understanding of Kubernetes best practices and dedication to Rapyd’s success play a critical role in the successful implementation of the optimization strategies.

"The PerfectScale team was very professional, helped explain the features, and helped guide us through the optimization process.” 

Conclusion

Rapyd's partnership with PerfectScale highlights the power of targeted optimization in complex cloud environments. Through a comprehensive strategy that balanced cost efficiency with system performance and reliability, Rapyd is setting a new standard for operational excellence in the fintech industry.

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Learn about Rapyd's optimization journey with PerfectScale, which allowed them to proactively take actions that improved cost efficiency and system performance of their Kubernetes environment.
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