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					                          Nation’s top sports franchise transforms
                          fan experience
                          Dallas Cowboys’ IT team builds and runs IT innovation engine

                                                      “Our on-site HP consultants were our linemen, our
                                                      first line of defense. They knew that if they did their
                                                      part right, everybody behind them would have the
                                                      opportunity to be successful.”
                                                      —Pete Walsh, Head of Technology, Dallas Cowboys


                                                                                Founded in 1960, the fabled Dallas Cowboys have
                           Objective                                            a record that spawns superlatives. The most valuable
                           Establish IT infrastructure that transforms          sports franchise in the United States, the Cowboys
                           spectator sports and advances growth of nation’s     are the only National Football League (NFL) team to
                           top athletic franchise along with its portfolio      achieve 20 consecutive winning seasons (1966-1985),
                           of 30 businesses                                     one of the longest winning streaks in all professional
                                                                                sports.
                           Approach
                                                                                Now, the Cowboys have a new award to complement
                           Collaborate with HP Services consultants to plan,    their five Vince Lombardi Trophies. The team’s new
                           implement and smoothly transfer to virtualized IT    home, the Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, was
                           infrastructure while building in-house expertise     selected as Sports Facility of the Year at the 2010
                                                                                Sports Business Awards, an annual event held by
                           IT improvements                                      SportsBusiness Journal and SportsBusiness Daily,
                           •	Create ten-year road map and transfer within       the sports industry’s leading trade publications.
                             eight months from ‘80s IT to state-of-the-art
                                                                                Inaugurated in June 2009 and chosen to host Super
                             infrastructure
HP customer case study:                                                         Bowl XLV in February 2011, the stadium is well on
                           •	Establish specialized support procedures and       its way to fulfilling the vision of Cowboys owner
HP Technology Services
                             services to assure flawless event-day operations   Jerry Jones to become the greatest sports and
Industry: Sports and                                                            entertainment venue in the world.
                           •	Enable a small staff to manage 250 servers
entertainment
                             and 200 storage disks running the stadium
                                                                                Using 21st century information technology (IT),
                             and 30+ businesses
                                                                                the 100,000-seat stadium merges spectacular
                           •	Free up IT team to craft new services that raise   media and architectural innovations to engage
                             earnings and efficiencies                          and enthrall its audiences.
                                                                                Under the largest single-span dome in the world,
                           Business benefits
                                                                                the largest HDTV screen in the world spans nearly
                           •	Lower total cost of ownership by $1 million        two-thirds of the football field. A network integrates
                             per year                                           this huge device as well as 50 other big screens and
                           •	Increase event-day earnings by 30% in first year   3,000 more monitors, each with its own IP address.
                           •	Provide cashless convenience from ticket           The displays keep audiences close to the action on the
                             purchase and parking through departure             field as well as to content, services and advertisements
                                                                                customized to their section, club, and soon, their
                           •	Expand customer relationships and revenues
                                                                                mobile personal devices.
                             with customized services that engage and
                             enthrall fans                                      Backed by implementation and support services from
                           •	Capture intelligence to advance all                HP Technology Services, an HP infrastructure drives
                             Cowboys’ businesses                                all the stadium’s operations—including its enormous
                                                                                retractable roof; climate control and lighting systems;
Customer
                                 real-time menus and cashless transactions at 212             HP Services: “our linemen”
                                 concession stands; inventory and point-of-sale systems
solution at                      at 35 pro shops; and the purchase and scanning of            Two on-site HP mission critical support consultants
                                                                                              worked with the Cowboys’ IT team to plan and
a glance                         tickets and parking passes. And while gathering
                                 real-time business intelligence across these operations,     conduct the eight-month transition and virtualize their
Primary hardware                 the infrastructure also runs the Jones family’s enterprise   new server and storage environment. Throughout the
•	HP	ProLiant	BL460c	
                                 of more than 30 other businesses in 90 locations.            process, they transferred expertise in the use of HP
  server blades
                                                                                              systems and management tools.
•	HP	BladeSystem	c7000	
                                 The virtualized environment is built on an HP
  Enclosures                                                                                  “Our IT staff of 11 people were new to blade
                                 BladeSystem infrastructure with 250 HP ProLiant
•	HP	Virtual	Connect			
                                 blade servers and two mirrored 100-terabyte HP               technology and HP products, and faced an
•	HP	ProLiant	DL380	servers
                                 StorageWorks 8100 Enterprise Virtual Array SANs              undertaking of enormous magnitude,” says Walsh.
•	HP	StorageWorks	8100	
  Enterprise Virtual Arrays      located at the central data center in the stadium and        “The HP consultants augmented our team, helping
•	HP	StorageWorks	9000	          at a remote location.                                        them build out the infrastructure and acquire expertise.”
  Virtual Library System
                                 “We’re using IT to transform sports and entertainment        “Our on-site HP consultants were our linemen, our first
Primary software                                                                              line of defense,” says Walsh. “They knew that if they
•	HP	Insight	Dynamics            to what is now possible,” says Head of Technology
                                 Pete Walsh. “While raising significant revenue, we’re        did their part right, everybody behind them would
•	HP	Insight	Remote	Support
•	HP	Virtual	Connect	            changing the way fans interact with us, and creating         have the opportunity to be successful.”
  Enterprise Manager             an incredible experience for fans from the moment            The two HP Services consultants inspired confidence
•	HP	Data	Protector              they buy tickets to their departure.”                        from the start.
•	HP	Business	Copy	EVA
                                                                                              “They were very personable and knowledgeable,”
•	HP	Continuous	Access	EVA
•	VMware	Virtual	
                                 A great partnership                                          says Walsh, “and also team players. They mapped
  Infrastructure 3 version 3.5   Formerly, fans flocked to the team’s first home,             out in detail what it would take to migrate our
  (upgrade planned)
                                 the 65,000-seat Texas Stadium. Built in 1971,                environments and avoid disrupting the businesses.
Operating system
                                 the stadium had only recently piloted credit                 They knew what they were doing. They ran several
•	Microsoft	Windows®	
                                 cards at its 30 concessions and its IT consisted of          tests using HP migration tools, and they worked the
  Server 2003
•	Microsoft	Windows®
                                 another vendor’s rack-mounted computers running              first time. We knew we had the right team.”
  Server 2008                    individual applications.
Network protocol                  “Our challenge was to take an organization with             “Extension of my team”
•	Gigabit	Ethernet               very little technology,” says Walsh, “and develop a          “The HP consultants worked side by side with our
HP Services                      long-term IT vision for the enterprise as a whole, with      team to migrate all the data, transfer data centers from
•	Server	planning	and	
                                 businesses that include not just football but also oil       three locations into one new environment, and set up
  deployment services
•	Installation,	transition	
                                 and gas, medical imaging, real estate, merchandising         the new data center at the stadium,” says Haggard.
  and support services           and other companies.”                                        “There were a lot of moving parts.”
  for VMware and
  HP Insight Dynamics            After evaluating the R&D directions and leadership
•	HP	Critical	Watch	Remote	      of the major IT providers, the Cowboys chose HP.             “Everything has worked so wonderfully in
  Management
                                 “At every meeting, they stood out as committed to            our first year. Starting from little or nothing
•	HP	Enhanced	Mission	
                                 making us successful,” says Walsh. “We saw that              by way of IT, with HP Services we’ve built a
  Critical Services for event
  days, with two on-site         they stand behind their services and products and            very robust infrastructure and my staff has
  HP engineers                   do what they say they’ll do.”                                learned to manage this environment.”
                                                                                              Pete Walsh, Head of Technology, Dallas Cowboys
                                 Director of Enterprise Infrastructure Bill Haggard
                                 adds, “HP was very open about giving us a ten-year
                                 technology road map. We can keep our HP systems              “They came with a mind set to contribute as part of a
                                 current with a few upgrades rather than forklifts. And       team,” Haggard continues, “and they worked hand
                                 HP Services offered us their expertise and support to        in hand with my staff and our other vendors. The HP
                                 help us accomplish our vision. They put together a           consultants became an extension of my team.”
                                 three-year plan for services in migration, virtualization
                                 and ongoing support. It’s been a great partnership.”




2
For example, says Haggard, “The HP team                  Hereon, the possibilities
collaborated with my staff and our POS provider,
Radiant Systems, to provide each of our 212
                                                         are wide open
concession stands with its own back-end server to        By consolidating IT resources on a virtualized,
run POS software. They used VMware to virtualize all     converged HP infrastructure, the Cowboys have
these servers on just 16 blade systems that consume      lowered their total cost of IT ownership by an
half a rack. If we had used physical servers, they       estimated $1,000,000 per year.
would have filled 10 racks. We use less equipment,       Collaboration with HP Services has been integral
power and cooling as well as space.”                     to achieving these efficiencies. Now, the Cowboys’
And by helping the IT team employ HP Virtual             IT team has tools and processes that enable a small
Connect and Virtual Connect Enterprise Manager           staff—now 15—to manage 250 servers and 200
to tie LAN/SAN data to the server bay instead of         storage disks.
individual blade systems, the HP consultants enabled     “While working with us, they shared their knowledge,”
the Cowboys to cut cabling costs by 75%.                 says Haggard, “enabling my staff to become self-
                                                         sufficient in managing HP systems.”
“HP was very open about giving us a ten-
                                                         Walsh and Haggard speak of the expertise and ongoing
year technology road map. We can keep
                                                         support from HP Services as “our insurance policy.”
our HP systems current with a few upgrades
rather than forklifts. And HP Services offered           Such insurance is a sound investment, explains Walsh,
us their expertise and support to help us                when calculated against the potential loss of revenue
accomplish our vision.”                                  and fan good will associated with downtime. “Our HP
Bill Haggard, Director, Enterprise Infrastructure,       infrastructure is our utility,” says Walsh. “We expect
Dallas Cowboys                                           everything we run on it to work. On event days, we
                                                         have zero tolerance for downtime.
Transferring expertise in best practices of managing     “Everything has worked so wonderfully in our first
the virtualized environment, the HP consultants          year,” Walsh continues. “Starting from little or
standardized a support routine with a checklist of       nothing by way of IT, with HP Services we’ve built a
proactive activities. One of the consultants manages     very robust infrastructure and my staff has learned
the servers and the other oversees storage systems.      to manage this environment. Now, we can layer
Both make frequent checks on system health and           applications on top of it that will take us forward.
execute firmware updates and receive automated           Hereon, the possibilities are wide open.”
alerts when necessary.
The ongoing support services are provided through        “The HP consultants worked side by side
an HP Critical Service contract that’s tailored to       with our team to migrate all the data,
the Cowboys unique needs. For every concert,             transfer data centers from three locations
game or other event, the two HP consultants work         into one new environment, and set up the
in the command center alongside the Cowboys’ IT          new data center at the stadium. There were
team to help ensure smooth operation of the entire       a lot of moving parts.”
infrastructure. In advance, they confirm that critical   Bill Haggard, Director, Enterprise Infrastructure,
replacement parts are on site, and use HP Systems        Dallas Cowboys
Insight Manager with Insight Remote Support as
well as HP Critical Watch tools to test all servers,     Annual revenue from event days has already
applications and storage systems well before the         increased by about 30%, and not only because of
arrival of fans.                                         the new stadium’s larger seating capacity. Combining
In addition to the on-site support, HP provides an       tailored merchandising with streamlined transactions,
HP Critical Watch Remote Management contract             the Cowboys offer fans fresh incentives to patronize
for around-the-clock remote monitoring and               their concessions and pro shops.
technical support.




                                                                                                                3
                                       As Walsh and Haggard add wireless services and                             With wireless wayfinding services, fans will receive
                                       radio-frequency technology to the network, new                             more precisely targeted marketing and enriched
                                       interactive services and instantaneous offers will                         content. “When quarterback Tony Romo scores a
                                       reach fans through their cell phones.                                      touchdown,” says Haggard, “we can text a coupon
                                                                                                                  they can bring to a pro shop for a discount on a
                                       While the former stadium had no field clubs, the
                                                                                                                  Romo jersey.”
                                       Cowboys	Stadium	has	14	clubs	that	extend	through	
                                       every level of seating. On non-game days, they                             Haggard looks forward to offering coaching staff
                                       can become venues for smaller-scale events such as                         wireless playbooks on tablet PCs and introducing
                                       corporate conferences.                                                     wireless checkout in the 35 pro shops to eliminate
                                                                                                                  long lines on game days.
                                       Stretching our imaginations                                                “We’re also talking to each of the businesses on
                                       and technologies                                                           how they can take advantage of all this business
                                       “In year one, we planned our IT infrastructure and                         intelligence and infrastructure to increase efficiency
                                       got it off the ground,” says Haggard. “We’ve got a                         and expand services and revenues,” says Haggard.
                                       stadium that delivers what Jerry Jones calls ‘the wow                      “Without our on-site HP consultants and the expertise
                                       factor.’ Now, we’ll expand upon that to give fans an                       and knowledge they brought to the table, we wouldn’t
                                       experience that’s different every time, and better                         have been up and running in just eight months,”
                                       every time.                                                                Haggard concludes. “In fact, given where we were
                                       “HP Mission Critical Support and technology have                           starting from, without them we could not have
                                       enabled our IT staff to focus much more on innovation                      accomplished this transformation.”
                                       than on routine operations,” continues Haggard.
                                       “And our HP consultants’ forward look at technology
                                       helps us on a strategic level. We’re stretching our                        For more information visit
                                       imaginations and technologies to advance what is
                                                                                                                  http://www.hp.com/services/missioncritical
                                       possible in the world of sports and entertainment.”




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4AA2-6172ENW,	Created	July	2010	

				
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