"We are in the process of refreshing the hardware and moving to a virtual environment but, from a capacity perspective, it hasn't changed. We have been able to suck up the majority of the traffic through Akamai."
Qantas has increased capacity in its data centres to cater for the site's increased richness and functionality, but basic functions are handled by Akamai. The team has also configured the solution to cater for high traffic areas, such as its pricing feeds service which appears on other sites.
"Not only can we cope with the overall load with the 75 per cent offload, we can cope with spikes in those areas where we have intentionally tuned it," Tate says.
The platform has also allowed Qantas the flexibility to deliver streaming video for its high profile 'I still call Australia home' marketing campaign. The IT team uploaded the video to internet storage and served the content using Akamai's video player, freeing up staff to concentrate on core responsibilities.
"Our use case is really different [to many other organisations] but there are target times in which we want to use video, and being able to use Akamai's capability makes life a lot easier," Tate says.
Under the terms of Qantas' professional services agreement, Akamai provides a dedicated consultant for a fixed amount of time each month with contractual terms to manage the engagement.
"It means we can have an ongoing relationship with a person in Akamai who knows the site and our business, and we can tap into their knowledge. We get a lot of value from details around network management and architecture, HTTP architecture and search engine optimisation.
"Our developers are in that space but they are also architecting Java objects to work with the WebLogic portal and our backend infrastructure; they have a lot of technical bases to cover."
The Akamai technology automatically detects when the airline's origin server is not responding and displays an alternative, failover site to visitors. Once the server is back online, Akamai switches back to normal content delivery.
Qantas incorporates a lot Web application logic into its site to provide customers with a rich online experience and functionality. Its failover site, on the other hand, has a different look and feel. Customers can still access the site and buy tickets -- thanks to a partnership with transaction processing firm, Amadeus -- but they may not, for example, be able to apply for the Frequent Flyer program.
Tate and his team are now looking at ways to shift some of its in-house logic into the Cloud so that they can configure the failover site and improve the customer experience.
One of the risks of such a strategy is the difficulty of testing. At the moment, the risk is relatively low and is largely offset by Akamai's transparency.