Client Stories

Healthcare Provider

Embracing DevOps to rapidly deploy Data Visualisation Infrastructure

Objective: Rapidly deploy infrastructure to host key interactive data visualisations for central government, local authorities and the public to understand the impact of Covid-19 on their local area

Outcome: Go-live with public-facing dashboards achieved in just 4 days from project conception. Now over 1000 central government and local authority users interacting with a restricted set of data as well as over 3000 unique page views per day across 5 public dashboards

Results that matter:

  • Private and public-facing dashboards provide access to critical data that’s vital to decision-making and managing the Covid-19 pandemic
  • 1000+ Local Authority and Central Government users accessing private/restricted data visualisations informing local policy decisions
  • Public-facing dashboards average over 3,000 unique views per day

Delivering useful data to a range of stakeholders

Our client, a UK health provider, wanted to make interactive data dashboards available to various stakeholders dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The client’s digital team is responsible for delivering and supporting data services for the organisation.

To assist government organisations, local authorities and healthcare providers to better manage the Covid-19 health crisis, the team wanted to make critical information available through interactive data dashboards as follows:

  • Public: (mapped by local authority): Patients that are shielding, Covid-19 Triages, Progression of cases over time, vaccine volunteers, GP referrals (non-Covid-19 but showing impact from Covid-19 on this)
  • Private: Postcode level Covid-19 testing data (showing number of tests, positive results, cases and triages at a postcode level), postcode level shielded patient list, more detailed filtering to identify vaccine volunteers at a local level

6point6 was appointed to deploy the infrastructure that would support the data feeds and dashboard hosting environment.

Four days from scope to production

In just four days, we built an environment that would support the flow of data to each dashboard and ensure valuable information is made available to people who need it.

The front-end design of each dashboard had already been completed. Our role was to build the infrastructure that would support the data visualisations, and manage the installation and administration of the Tableau Server, hosted on AWS.

We set up a hosting environment for the data feeds and architected a data pipeline to take the data from our client to AWS and then to Tableau. Amazon Athena technology was used to convert data from the client’s files into a database Tableau can use.

We worked with the client’s digital team and other suppliers to understand and scope the client’s requirements from a rough design based on Tableau best practices.

Using Terraform (infrastructure-as-code), we then wrote the code for deploying the infrastructure and, in consultation with technology advisors from Tableau, who supported the installation of the product, configured it to work with AWS.

The urgency of the situation demanded a fast turnaround. Running Tableau on AWS enabled us to produce a data dashboard using vast datasets while AWS provided the speed and security we’ve come to expect from cloud-computing.

We ensured that every aspect of the infrastructure was secure by design, from start to finish. Once the penetration test was passed, the infrastructure was deployed – initially to host publicly available data only, then repurposed to create a second, private environment for authorised users to access sensitive information.

Essential information delivered to over 3,000 unique users each day

Within four months of the dashboards going live, an average of 1,000 users have signed up to access the private dashboards. The public-facing dashboards receive an average of 3,000 views a day.

Having access to reliable data is critical to providing healthcare services, and all the more so when a health crisis threatens lives and places enormous strain on healthcare resources.

6point6 architected infrastructure that enables data packages to move from the source to AWS, then on to Tableau to be published on the dashboard.

Thousands of people can now access vital information that enables them to make informed decisions about managing resources, curbing the spread of the virus and shielding people at higher risk. We’re working with the team to develop a third, private environment, with heightened security, for medical practitioners to access information relevant to their district.

We’re also engineering a second version of the data hosting environment so the team can expand the service and meet a growing need for data dashboards in other areas.

This version will incorporation automations, enabling more self-service and giving developers greater autonomy so they can enable features more quickly and push data directly from their server to the platform. This will greatly reduce the time it takes to roll out dashboards and lower operational overheads for DevOps and infrastructure.

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