UK Health & Beauty Retail Giant Slashes Costs and Accelerates Growth with AWS Serverless Solutions



Trapped in a vicious cycle of skyrocketing costs, operational bottlenecks, and sluggish response times, this UK health and beauty retail powerhouse found itself at a crossroads. Their legacy back-office systems, once cutting-edge, had become a liability – hindering growth, crippling decision-making, and eroding customer satisfaction.

But where others saw challenges, they saw an opportunity to disrupt and transform.

Discover their extraordinary digital transformation journey. 

Introduction: Background

With a strategic vision and an unwavering commitment to innovation, the retailer embarked on a bold journey to modernize their core finance and HR operations. They partnered with SkillNet who possessed deep industry knowledge and a proven track record of successful transformations.

Together, they introduced a game-changing serverless architecture on AWS, revolutionizing the retailer’s back-office landscape.

Business objectives:

  • Ensure high data reliability
  • Minimize manual interventions
  • Enhance reporting on errors and exceptions

IT objectives:

  • Develop scalable integrations using modern technology
  • Reduce operational costs
  • Implement a pay-per-use model for services


The retailer faced several significant challenges with their legacy systems:

  • High Costs: Maintaining middleware applications and infrastructure was expensive.
  • Resource Intensive: Continuous development and maintenance required a dedicated team.
  • Inflexibility: Monolithic design hindered adaptability to future needs.
  • Operational Inefficiencies: Manual interventions were needed for scalability, failure management, and exception handling.
  • Slow Response Times: Diagnosing and fixing issues took longer, leading to business disruptions.
  • Limited Visibility: Difficulties in foreseeing and managing system issues.
  • High Deployment Costs: Each new build incurred additional expenses.
  • Constant Expenses: Ongoing costs regardless of actual system usage.

Outdated Infrastructure

SkillNet Solution

SkillNet introduced a serverless architecture on AWS, transforming the retailer’s back-office operations. This new design focused on modern technology and scalable solutions, offering numerous benefits:

  • Zero Downtime: The system processes over 10 million transactions per month without interruption.
  • No Infrastructure Maintenance: Responsibility for infrastructure maintenance was eliminated.
  • Accelerated Build Time: Application build times were reduced from months to weeks.
  • Faster Error Resolution: Time required to diagnose and fix errors was significantly decreased.
  • Enhanced Flexibility and Resilience: Improved system adaptability and robustness.

Modern Serverless Architecture on AWS from SkillNet


The partnership with SkillNet led to transformative results for the retailer:

  • Uncompromising Reliability: Processing over 10 million transactions per month without interruption, ensuring unparalleled system availability and real-time visibility. 
  • Optimized Efficiency: Reducing operational overhead by 35% through a pay-per-use model and eliminating infrastructure maintenance.
  • Data-Driven Agility: Ensuring precise data for better decision-making, enabling agile responses to market dynamics and customer needs.
  • Future-Ready Operations: Seamlessly adapting to evolving requirements with enhanced flexibility and resilience, future-proofing operations.

As the CFO remarked during the go-live event, “I know it hasn’t been easy (it never is), but this achievement has been a long time coming. I appreciate all your efforts in making something happen that we’ve needed for the last 2, 3, 4, 5, or even 10+ years.”

The Head of Finance added, “Our team feels more productive now because they have a better set of tools at their disposal.”

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