safeway

Content Acceleration for Employee Training

Executive Summary

Safeway is one of the largest supermarket chains in North America with more than 2,200 stores and over 250,000 employees. Located primarily in the central and western United States, Safeway is known for everyday lower prices, online recipes, options for healthier living and grocery delivery in many major cities and suburbs.
A large part of Safeway’s success is a commitment to providing all employees with opportunities to grow personally and professionally. To ensure that employees are continually strengthening their skill set and developing as individuals, Safeway distributes numerous online training videos to all of their locations.

“The solution has provided bandwidth savings and eliminated the buffering issues when viewing the training videos. Also, with the training available at each store, it eliminates the need to have employees travel for training which saves Safeway a lot of money.
-Kathleen Richins, Satellite Network Manager, Safeway

Challenges

With 30-50 users per location requiring access to the videos at any one time, Safeway’s existing multicast network couldn’t keep up. The cache had limited storage and capabilities with only 80GB of disk space for each server. This resulted in slow user response times and stores constantly needing to remove existing files to make room for new ones. Plus, when it was time to download new videos, employees spent as much time waiting for the videos to finish buffering as they did watching them. They needed a solution.

How SuperLumin Helped

Safeway implemented a complete end-to-end eCDN (Enterprise Content Delivery Network) content acceleration solution using technology provided by SuperLumin, a STRATACACHE company. This technology allows content to be replicated from central content servers to each store without any human intervention.

The SuperLumin content caching servers now used at each location have a 1TB disk capacity, eliminating the worry of running out of disk space. Any content updates are automatically handled and replicated for each store.

In addition to content acceleration, Safeway is using STRATACACHE Constellation Manager and OmniCast solutions to automatically deliver the latest training videos to each location - without buffering - while automatically removing videos that are no longer relevant. SuperLumin also provides centralized management and monitoring of all Safeway stores using a single, easy to use interface.

“The limited human intervention in media content distribution on a day to day basis is the biggest win not only for our IT team that manages it but also the store employees who no longer have to make phone calls and submit feedback for missing content.”
Kathleen Richins, Satellite Network Manager, Safeway

Results, Return on Investment and Future Plans

Safeway can now deliver the most current training content to all locations quickly and easily, saving time and money, while improving the user experience for their valued employees.

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