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Bargain Retailer finds GoAnywhere Really “Delivers the Goods”

Bargain Retailer finds GoAnywhere Really “Delivers the Goods”
Decades of experience helping Asia-Pacific customers have established Generic Systems Australia as our region’s local experts in secure managed file transfer. In this case study, we share how a US retailer is leveraging both robustness and advanced features of GoAnywhere MFT , the world’s leading  MFT solution.
Grocery Outlet is a chain of more than 300 family-owned deep-discount grocery stores based in Berkeley, California. The retailer helps more than 1.5 million shoppers each week save big, making it the US’s largest extreme value retailer.

Homegrown: Good for Produce; Not for File Transfers

Steve Tuscher is the Director of IT at Grocery Outlet, overseeing technology which manages more than 33,000 file transfers each day.

“We had always transferred files between our systems with homegrown FTP scripts,” he said, “but knew we needed a better solution.
Writing the scripts for these transfers was time consuming.  However, the real challenge the IT team faced was tracking down what happened if a file exchange failed.
The grocer primarily wanted to send files back and forth reliably and in a controlled manner. They also sought a solution that included error reporting functionality that was platform independent, as they exchange files with multiple vendors, suppliers, and other trading partners daily.

“One of our vendors suggested a file transfer tool but it was priced out at US$100,000, and we didn't want to do that,” said Steve. “We knew of GoAnywhere Managed File Transfer (MFT) because they'd been in the AS400 (IBM i) world for a couple decades at least, the same as we have been. So we thought we'd give GoAnywhere MFT a shot.
He added: “It's been a great product. It worked from day one and it's worked ever since.”

Bargain Retailer Gets Money’s Worth

While GoAnywhere does the heavy lifting on the large volume of daily files transferred, Steve discovered another surprising benefit of GoAnywhere MFT — managing the many emails the company received and creating a reporting system for them as well.
“After we learned that GoAnywhere could retrieve mail from an Exchange mailbox, we developed an automated script to do that. It checks for incoming mail every three seconds and launches a job based on if there's new mail on the IBMi. We then take that request, run another job, then return the email with a report. It's a handy little reporting system that's very popular,” he said.

GoAnywhere not only provides users a way to simplify and secure their file transfers, keeping sensitive data secure both at rest and in motion, it also helps retailers meet relevant security and compliance regulations, with auditing and reporting functionality, as well as strong encryption and security protocols.

“All the other extras that came with it, and all of the ways we're using GoAnywhere now have been a bonus,” said Steve. In particular, he called out the solution’s scripting language.

“The robustness of that language has been a real surprise – a pleasant surprise,” he said.
GoAnywhere’s ease-of-use, and ability to manage the many file transfers occurring each day without the need to write homemade FTP scripts enables Grocery Outlet’s IT team to spend their time on more critical, and less manually intensive tasks.

Improved Workflows and Partner Relations

Grocery Outlet extracts much of its data from FTP scripts. With GoAnywhere, the previously complex process now runs unattended every night.
“It's been great. Just having the ability to run an FTP script to get data, zip it up, and send it somewhere has been phenomenal,” Steve said.
The GoAnywhere solution saves Grocery Outlet’s IT team time in two ways: problem resolution and eliminating the problems all together.
“Typically, you'd copy some script and create a new script, and it would generally run. The problem is that when it wouldn't run, you wouldn't find out about it until it was too late, or until people were waiting for their orders or in a crisis.

“The real time saving in GoAnywhere is that it basically never fails. That thing is rock solid. I can't remember the last time we had a failure due to GoAnywhere. If there's a failure, it's because the receiving side is down or not available.”
With GoAnywhere quickly replacing all internal FTP scripts, the grocer transformed their data delivery across all their business partners and all internal systems. Steve noted his surprise at being able to do so as quickly and as easily as they did.
The biggest surprise for the company, however, was how they use the email retrieval function.

“That has been a huge homerun application for being able to request and report on your phone, and have it delivered back to your phone, like a sales report, within seconds. The response time is amazing! Literally within seconds you’re able to get a nicely formatted HTML email report on your phone, no matter where you are, via GoAnywhere. That has been great,” Steve said.
He said he tried to stay up to date on updates to GoAnywhere, so that Grocery Outlet could take advantage of new features.

Quick ROI

Steve is enthusiastic in his recommendation of GoAnywhere, exclaiming:
“It will be the easiest implementation you've ever had. It will be the best value of software that you've ever had. And you'll be sorry if you do not explore this package.”
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