November 2, 2021

Choice Hotels Deploys 85% Faster Using Harness

Table of Contents

Key takeaway

About Choice Hotels

Choice Hotels is proud to help you find hotels that make it possible for you to connect with the people who matter most. Whether you are seeking leisure or business hotels, in the U.S. or around the globe, with more than 7,000 hotels in over 40 countries and territories, Choice Hotels are never far from where you need to be. You can always count on their hotels for a warm welcome and real value, and with their Choice Privileges® rewards program, they ensure that travel is as rewarding as possible.

Choice Hotels Enters the CI/CD Tool Business

In 2015, the DevOps tools marketplace was barren. Companies didn’t have a variety of choices between CI tools, CD tools, or anything in between. This forced large enterprises to create their own solution using tears, sweat, and hundreds of engineering hours. As Choice Hotels began its journey to the cloud, they found themselves in a similar scenario.  

Choice had built a CD solution using Jenkins. The solution relied on massive customization and scripting. Despite the tool’s inconvenience, Choice made it work adequately for four years. But overtime Choice's needs outgrew the CD tool's capabilities. There was no support for containers or for advanced deployment strategies like Canary. 

"Our internal tool served its purpose, and we were ready to modernize the tech we use."

Jason Simpson VP of Engineering

Not only did the tool struggle to keep up with the modern world, but it also required a small army to operate. On average it cost Choice Hotels 200k a year to maintain their custom Jenkins solution. Legacy monolith teams that were using the solution could only deploy in certain windows, most commonly 10pm. These deployments required 12 hours of work. Heaven forbid the company needed to roll back because that process would take an additional 4 hours. Choice was spending too much time on a lackluster deployment process. 

"We wanted to provide more value to our customers by streamlining our CI/CD efforts."

Stephen Cihak, Director of Cloud Engineering

Choice evaluated multiple CD tools to no avail. They finally turned to Harness to solve their delivery conundrum.

Harness Transforms Choice Hotels’ Deployments

Choice Hotels now deploys 100% of their Amazon services using Harness. Harness helped the Choice digital team break up their monlith and migrate in 3 months. 

Harness streamlined Choice Hotels’ pipelines and automated the company’s deployment approval process. This reduced deployment effort 85%. Rollbacks have been reduced from 4 hours to 5 minutes. 

“Harness helps us capitalize on investments we’ve made in automation tools by streamlining everything into a single pipeline.”

Jason Simpson VP of Engineering

By using Continuous Verification, Choice has been able to discover issues sooner, reducing impacts and speeding MTTR, reducing the financial impact of each failure.

"Harness helps take the uncertainty out of deployments and allows teams to deploy whenever they want."

Stephen Cihak, Director of Cloud Engineering

Harness also removed the custom solution’s maintenance burden. This is saving Choice Hotels roughly $200k a year in CI/CD maintenance costs. 

By using Harness for Continuous Delivery, Choice Hotels completely changed the way it deploys software. Massive risky releases have turned into common occurrences. Do you have a custom scripted mess that needs to be booted? Here’s how Harness can help.

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