Freshworks

CASE STUDY

All 67 of our services use Redis Enterprise in some way. Without its seamless functioning and automation, we would still be putting an unsustainable amount of effort into infrastructure and operations management. Redis Enterprise has helped our teams focus on innovation and business growth to successfully expand our product portfolio and serve new geographies.


—Naren Janakiraman, Director of Engineering, Freshworks

Company: Freshworks
Industry: Technology

The Customer:

Freshworks is a global leader in customer engagement software. Its cloud-based suite of business software, led by its flagship support product Freshdesk, is used by more than 150,000 organizations worldwide.

The Challenge:

Freshworks has seen year-over-year growth upwards of 50% for the past six years, and topped $100 million in annual recurring revenue. This extraordinary growth, spurred by the rapid adoption of its products, was straining the capabilities of Freshwork’s application architecture and development operations.

The Solution:

After evaluating several NoSQL in-memory databases, Freshworks ultimately chose Redis Enterprise Cloud, enterprise-grade Redis from Redis Labs, to replace its underperforming AWS ElastiCache cache solution.

The Benefits:

As a fully managed Database-as-a-Service offering, Redis Enterprise Cloud’s automated scaling, fast failover, cluster creation, persistence, and high availability were huge selling points for Freshworks as it contemplated an expansion from three to five regions.

“With native Database-as-a-Service that runs in our AWS cloud, Redis Enterprise Cloud offers the best of all worlds.”
—Naren Janakiraman, Director of Engineering, Freshworks

Customer service is key to any successful customer-facing business, and Freshworks makes it easy. Since its inception in 2010, Freshworks has become a leader in customer-engagement software. Its cloud-based suite of business software, led by its flagship support product Freshdesk, is used by more than 150,000 organizations worldwide, including Panasonic, Hewlett-Packard, NYU, and American Express.

Freshworks has seen year-over-year growth upwards of 50% for the past six years, and recently topped $100 million in annual recurring revenue. This extraordinary growth, spurred by the rapid adoption of Freshdesk and the addition of seven other new products, was straining the capabilities of Freshwork’s application architecture and development operations.

As the company’s database load grew, it faced trouble scaling performance. Freshworks needed to reduce the burden on its primary MySQL database, but was finding that its current caching solution, open-source Redis provided by Amazon ElastiCache, was creating more problems than it was solving. 

“ElastiCache didn’t support live migrations, so if we wanted to migrate data from one instance to another, several weeks of manual human effort were required in order to avoid downtime,” said Abhishek Dhulipudi, Freshworks Site Reliability Engineer. “This limitation really slowed down our product development lifecycle.”


Selecting Redis Enterprise

After evaluating several NoSQL in-memory databases like Aerospike and Hazelcast, Freshworks decided it wanted to stay with the extremely high performance and flexibility of Redis. Ultimately, the company chose Redis Enterprise Cloud, enterprise-grade Redis from Redis Labs, to replace its underperforming Amazon ElastiCache caching solution.

“With native Database-as-a-Service that runs in our AWS cloud, Redis Enterprise Cloud offers the best of all worlds,” said Naren Janakiraman, Freshworks’ Director of Engineering. “We have access to the highest in-memory performance available on the market today, flexible data structures for extreme efficiency across a wide variety of use cases, and fully managed operations that speed up—rather than slow down—application delivery.”

In addition to using Redis Enterprise as a frontend cache for its MySQL database, Freshworks also uses Redis Enterprise for:

“Every request that comes into Freshdesk touches Redis Enterprise in one way or another,” Dhulipudi noted. “By offloading several key database functions to Redis Enterprise, we’ve been able to decrease our number of MySQL database instances while significantly increasing application response times and our ability to scale.”


Realizing the benefits of Redis Enterprise

As a fully managed Database-as-a-Service offering, Redis Enterprise Cloud comes without any operational headaches. Its automated scaling, failover, cluster creation, persistence, and high availability were huge selling points for Freshworks as it contemplated an upcoming expansion from three to five regions. 

“All 67 of our services use Redis Enterprise in some way. Without its seamless functioning and automation, we would still be putting an unsustainable amount of effort into infrastructure and operations management,” Janakiraman said. “Redis Enterprise has helped our teams focus on innovation and business growth to successfully expand our product portfolio and serve new geographies.”

As Freshworks looks to the future and continues to scale to meet demand, it sees Redis Enterprise’s role expanding to pick up even larger workloads. “More creative caching, persistent data store, microservices, and user analytics use cases will be implemented as we work to keep our suite of business software performing at the highest level possible,” Dhulipudi said.