Modern applications rely on a different approach to data: one that maps to developers’ programming approach, speeds up deployment, improves availability and scales over time. But developers don’t want to implement and manage the databases these applications require themselves, and they shouldn’t have to.

Here’s a look at one leading software delivery platform company’s hunt for a database that could check all those boxes, help them improve developer velocity, remove the toil of database implementation, and become one of the fastest-growing startups in the industry.

Case study: A groundbreaking software delivery platform company’s hunt for the ideal database

The Harness platform enables organizations to deliver software at increased velocity — without having to make tradeoffs or compromises in quality, reliability, security or efficiency. Harness transforms businesses’ ability to move fast, stay competitive and focus on the creative process of building software instead of focusing efforts on the tedious and costly process of shipping software.

Developers are attracted to Harness because it uses automation to take away the most painful parts of their jobs in building software. Engineers can leverage solutions for every stage of the development process, and get a unified view of their pipeline, all the way through deployment of an application and beyond.

“Organizations want to increase their software velocity and help solve developer toil,” says Surya Bhagvat, director, site reliability engineering at Harness. “They want to automate and streamline every step of the software delivery lifecycle, while still delivering the developer experience that teams require.”

Because all these features have significant demands on the backend, Harness required a flexible database solution that could support a highly available and rapidly growing platform, according to Bhagvat. And, of course, they wanted to get their product into the market as quickly as possible.

“We wanted to put the product into the hands of the customer fast, so we could test and iterate, get feedback on features and map our development path into the future,” Bhagvat said.

“When selecting a solution — whether it’s a software development platform or a database — developers want to dive in and get their hands dirty, try it out, without reading through hundreds of pages of documentation,” Bhagvat added. “They want something that’s well-known and has well-known use cases, a professional services team, and answers on Google when they run into a question.”

“Choosing a popular database, like MongoDB, helped us get started quickly,” he says. “We wanted to quickly try it out and confirm whether it met our needs.”

4 key reasons why MongoDB Atlas was the ultimate choice

  1. Ease of getting started

While Harness initially began development using MongoDB’s free-to-use Community version, they ended up migrating to MongoDB Atlas, the company’s fully-managed, multi-cloud database service. This ensured the high availability and security required for their platform and supported their company growth plans.

Users can get a database running in just minutes. MongoDB Atlas handles all the complexity of deploying, managing and healing deployments on any cloud service provider. MongoDB Atlas has become the backbone of all of Harness’ applications..

MongoDB Atlas checked all of Harness’ boxes from the start, Bhagvat explains. It offered data distribution and mobility across AWS, Azure and Google Cloud, built-in automation for resource and workload optimization and drivers for all major programming languages. The Harness team was able to immediately start building the application, but most importantly, focus on features without spending time configuring or managing a database. In addition, the flexible schema lets Harness continue to use an agile approach as customer feedback and real-world testing results roll in.

“What I really like about MongoDB is it’s the perfect database for getting started. It gives you such flexibility to rapidly innovate, and yet for companies that scale, it also provides a solution that is reliable, that they can continue to grow with,” Bhagvat said.

2. Performance metrics and dashboard

Observability is very important for scale, especially in terms of reliability, so MongoDB Atlas’s out-of-the-box performance-related dashboards were also a crucial factor in their decision to upgrade from MongoDB Community version to Atlas. Harness is able to get real-time metrics on telemetry and use the Database Profiler to understand the patterns and load on the system. Harness engineers are able to leverage all of these metrics, which not only track events, like a CPU spike, but reveal what’s happening in the code behind that spike.

3. Security consciousness

Harness is experiencing rapid growth and the company continues to focus on security. Being able to leverage different capabilities within Atlas such as Role Based Access Management, Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) peering with private connectivity, auditing and data encryption allows the Harness team to make sure they’re innovating in a secure manner.

4. Ability to scale with MongoDB Atlas

As adoption of the Harness platform has grown to thousands of DevOps and engineering teams, Harness looked at the next phase of their product roadmap, with an eye on how they could scale seamlessly and securely, while offering flawless customer service and performance.

“The rapid development we wanted, coupled with the global scale of our enterprise customers — these were all reasons we chose to go with a managed offering, and why we went with Atlas,” Bhagvat says.

Scale will remain a key priority as the expanding customer base adopts new modules and software delivery capabilities in the Harness platform.

“Using MongoDB Atlas as the backend for our platform has allowed Harness to focus on delivering new capabilities for our customers while reducing the undifferentiated work that comes along with managing your own database infrastructure,” Bhagvat said. “Ultimately, this allows the thousands of teams using the Harness platform to deliver software that moves the needle on their business.”

To learn more about why companies like Ancestry, Priceline,Tyler Technologies, United Wholesale Mortgage and more work with Harness, visit

Learn more here about MongoDB Atlas, our multi-cloud developer data platform, and try it free forever here.

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