Case Study Background

Customer Stories

Tesco Technology Serves Stores Better with Chef Edge Automation


Tesco’s corporate mandate is to “Serve Shoppers a Little Better Every Day”, and that includes improved IT processes, such as a multi-year continuous implementation initiative to improve Tesco’s technology infrastructure and resilience capabilities. The operations team was managing tens of thousands of unique workloads, including 8,000+ data center servers and 1,000s of VMs in the stores. In addition to maintaining existing systems, the operations team was tasked with an in-store server migration project where they would be moving mission-critical transaction processing and other retail services from on-prem to an in-store virtual platform. The operations teams viewed the upgrade as an opportunity to improve the way they manage updating and maintaining the associated infrastructure and applications. 

About Tesco

Tesco, a British multinational groceries retailer, is ranked as the world’s ninth-largest retailer by revenue.

Chef has enabled us to deliver updates as promised across all 2,700 stores as well as validate the state of systems daily—automatically.

Craig Roberts Software Development Engineer, Tesco


The business case was approved to migrate from existing physical servers and applications to a new service orientated architecture that would run on an in-store virtual edge platform. The new edge platform would provide the opportunity to update/redefine server configurations and eliminate many existing support and remediation challenges. Chef provided the foundation for a new solution providing repeatable automation that helped Tesco advance their CI/CD efforts and deliver predictable outcomes at scale. Working together, the infrastructure and application teams were able to separate responsibilities and develop a set of flexible automation templates (Chef cookbooks) that were easy to customize and version. 

This increased converge speed in local development and enabled the Ops team to provide more flexible server configuration without increasing overhead and deliver application updates faster. Using Chef InSpec the operations team now can confirm updates are delivered as promised across their 2,700 stores as well as validating the state of systems daily. 


  • Resilience: Reduced time to recover by 94%
  • Compliance: 100% automated validation of 2,700+ stores daily.
  • Customer Impact: Improved control of the ecosystem has increased resource availability and change velocity

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