Save A Lot embarks on enterprise-wide transformation with Aruba ESP

Save A Lot embarks on enterprise-wide transformation with Aruba ESP

Leading US discount grocery chain chooses Aruba to enable its mobile-first, cloud-first initiatives as it transitions to a wholesale business model.

Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company, has announced that Save A Lot, one of the largest discount grocery store chains in the US, is deploying an Aruba ESP (Edge Services Platform) network to support a technology transformation initiative across its entire organization.

By rolling out the Aruba infrastructure in its headquarters in St. Louis, Missouri, 13 wholesale distribution centers and nearly 1,000 retail stores in 32 states, Save A Lot will enable more modern, mobile and cloud-first environments.

As a neighborhood grocer, Save A Lot provides unmatched quality and value to local families and communities. In an effort to become the brand of choice for its customers, the company is currently in the process of transitioning to a wholesale model that is key to its future growth and expansion.

A critical piece of this transformation is providing secure and reliable connectivity in its distribution centers where Save A Lot’s product selectors were grappling with a slow and inefficient network. In addition, the company wants to ensure that its new state-of-the-art headquarters, supporting more than a thousand users and their countless devices, becomes a collaborative, mobile-first space.

Save A Lot turned to Aruba to implement a full suite of Aruba ESP solutions, delivered by its service provider, AT&T, as a managed service. Save A Lot is using Aruba access switches, Wi-Fi 6 access points and mobility controllers, ClearPass Policy Manager for full wired and wireless network access control and Aruba Central for cloud-based management – a key requirement for the company.

AT&T will provide site surveys, structured cabling, installation and management of the Aruba ESP solution for Save A Lot. AT&T’s comprehensive site surveys gather environmental data such as the cable distances, MDF/IDF locations, pictures, RF noise floor, competing Wi-Fi networks and other outside interference to help provide the best coverage possible. The service will also allow Save A Lot to utilize many different IoT devices across the Wi-Fi platform.

“We believe Aruba will be a critical unlock for our IT infrastructure and are thrilled to be working with the team to implement a broad range of solutions designed to help us maximize productivity in all of our facilities,” said Jennifer Hopper, Chief Information Officer at Save A Lot. “Whether in our distribution centers, home office or our stores, empowering our team members with fast and frictionless network access is a top priority. I’m confident Aruba will help us deliver an outstanding experience that will help us further accelerate our transformation.”

Aruba Central’s ability to provide a single pane of glass for management of the unified infrastructure, Zero Touch Provisioning for quick and easy configuration and maintenance, and APIs for critical integrations – in particular with ServiceNow and Splunk – were all key factors in Save A Lot’s decision to select Aruba ESP, as well as ClearPass.

“ClearPass is foundational to our network security strategy going forward; it ties together different technologies in our ecosystem to provide a secure and reliable network experience for our users,” Hopper said. “With ClearPass, we’re able to create a Zero Trust environment and embrace capabilities like dynamic segmentation that are crucial for our varied distribution centers, retail stores and office environments, ensuring that all users and devices can be securely onboarded to the network.”

For Save A Lot’s new corporate headquarters, the Aruba ESP infrastructure is core to enabling the collaborative, mobile-first space that Save A Lot has envisioned. Employees leverage smart conference rooms throughout the facility, use collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams to conduct business, and leaders regularly use video broadcasts to communicate with and provide strategic business updates to employees in the distribution centers and stores.

With Aruba ESP, Save A Lot can support a greater number of users and devices at improved speeds and without sacrificing reliability. Hopper noted Aruba’s new infrastructure will make it possible for someone to take a Teams call and walk from one side of the building to the other without the call dropping.

“We’re excited about the integration between Aruba and Microsoft, which makes collaboration seamless and reliable for our users,” she added.

The Aruba infrastructure is also advantageous for Save A Lot’s retail stores. With Aruba Central, the company now has a centralized, cloud-based platform to manage all aspects of its network, allowing expansion of mobile devices, new technologies and applications, and IoT devices.

Save A Lot plans to complete phase one of its Aruba ESP deployment by the end of October 2021, which will include seven of its distribution centers, its St. Louis-based corporate stores and its headquarters. In phase two, the company will connect the remaining distribution centers and complete the rollout to its licensed partners for the remaining retail stores.

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