Virtualisation and Storage services for CreativeLynx

Virtualisation and Storage Services for CreativeLynx

The Client

Creative Lynx were established in 1986 and have grown to become one of the UK’s leading design and digital agencies. They don’t class themselves as a run of the mill company.

They are specialists working in specialised fields delivering outstanding branding and marketing.

The Challenge

Creative Lynx, due to the nature of their business, work with large files and have a number of Terabyte’s of storage.

The specification was to include an offsite backup solution to build in to their DR solution.

Creative Lynx were seeing excellent growth and their network needed to have high availability to stop any downtime but be very scalable. There is a mix of PC’s and MAC’s so the solution needed to integrate them both.

The Solution

BlueCoffee installed two new HP servers as physical hosts running VMware which connected to a number of HP P4300 Storageworks SAN’s. These SAN’s came in pairs which meant that Creative Lynx could replicate their data between floors.

Due to the large amount of data a tiered storage approach was implemented. This included one pair of SAN’s filled with 15K discs for critical data like SQL and Exchange and the second pair of SAN’s with 7.2K discs which were used for file storage and less critical data.

VMware gave the ability to have a number of virtual servers with automatic failover and high availability to limit any downtime. It also gave them the ability to deploy servers very quickly for development.

BlueCoffee upgraded their mail server to Exchange 2010 and a Windows 2008 domain to give them a better user experience with Outlook Web Access in Exchange and an out-of-the-box archiving solution. Veeam software was used to back up and then replicate to the datacentre offsite.

The Benefits

BlueCoffee Networks provided Creative Lynx with a fully project managed solution which we also support. The business has seen noticeable energy savings, scalability, resilience, redundancy and enhanced performance, as well as greater levels of Disaster Recovery.

Benefits include:
•    High availability virtual environment
•    Fully scalable infrastructure
•    Enhanced Disaster Recovery
•    Increased performance
•    Development area
•    An integrated Mac and Windows network

Hardware and Software Procurement Services for Ferranti Technologies

Procurement Services for Ferranti Technologies

The Client

Ferranti Technologies is a name renowned within the aerospace, military, defence and commercial industries for supplying high technology electronic products for Air, Land and Marine applications.

Ferranti Technologies have a comprehensive range of products from Helmet Mounted, Guided Weapons, Landing Simulation, Force Protection and Mission Management Systems.

Delivering high levels of service, communication and documentation to its clients means a greater demand for reliable technology with high uptime and performance.

The Challenge

Due to the nature of the products provided and the clients that they service, Ferranti Technologies were very specific about their requirements for an outsourced IT Partner.

It was imperative to find an experienced and established IT Company that could work together with their in-house Technical Staff, to provide them with a broad range of services including procurement, support and consultancy.

The Solution

BlueCoffee used its extensive background in procurement and network consultancy to provide cost effective IT products, ranging from enterprise level servers and solutions to desktops PC’s, printers and software licences in order to meet Ferranti’s exact business requirements.
Due to the high level of service delivery, BlueCoffee were also chosen to provide 2nd and 3rd line Helpdesk Support to complement Ferranti’s own IT Department, together with specialist technical consultancy for virtualization and backup technologies.

The Benefits

BlueCoffee Networks specialise in getting the best value and total cost of ownership for our clients by advising on the best hardware and software solutions currently available.

Because we also research future developments and trial new hardware and software, we can advise on imminent new technologies that may benefit our clients.

The broad range of experience, expertise, partnerships and accreditations, allows us to deliver a truly unique end-to-end service. Benefits include:
•    IT cost control
•    Expert advice and consultancy
•    Improved system performance
•    Maximum total cost of ownership and ROI
•    Time saving and reduced in-house training costs

IT Network Support for MMC Solutions

Network Support for MMC Solutions

The Client

MMC Solutions have a wealth of experience spanning more than 14 years, in wholesale and retail manufacturing, printing, POS and installation solutions.

By offering innovative and comprehensive in-house production services, MMC provide a complete manufacturing process, from large format printing, joinery, steel or wire work to complete onsite project management. MMC act as either a main contractor or subcontractor, within the most complex and demanding environments.

The Challenge

MMC are highly dependent on secure and reliable technologies having seen a large amount of change and growth over the last few years.

MMC did not have dedicated resources to fully support their IT network or the skill set to manage their internal systems. MMC approached BlueCoffee Networks to offer a reliable and effective outsourced IT Support service company wide. This consisted of a proactive, fully monitored approach from the BlueCoffee Helpdesk.

The Solution

To get the IT Support and specialist expertise needed to optimise their evolving and increasingly sophisticated IT infrastructure, MMC opted for BlueCoffee’s fully inclusive managed IT service. BlueCoffee proactively monitor MMC’s servers to pre-empt potential problems and rectify them before they happen, as well as offering a reactive Helpdesk with set Service Levels Agreements (SLA’s).
BlueCoffee have also set up their backups to automate offsite every evening and carry out regular DR tests on MMC’s behalf.

The Benefits

BlueCoffee Networks specialise in achieving high ‘first fix’ rates as part of the IT Helpdesk service.

By resolving IT issues quickly and efficiently, BlueCoffee ensure that they are achieving the very best value and service delivery for our supported clients.

Reduced downtime from proactive monitoring, together with increased network performance means numerous benefits, including:

•    Increased system performance and reliability
•    Improved Service Level Agreement
•    Reduction in IT Support Budget
•    Reduced downtime
•    Extended hardware lifespan and ROI
•    Network monitoring

IT Network Support for Jones Gough Solicitors

Network Support for Jones Gough

The Client

Jones Gough LLP Solicitors are one of the North West’s leading law firms. They provide a valued and well-respected local service for their clients based in and around the Manchester and Cheshire area, extending to clients who are situated nationwide.

Delivering high levels of service, communication and documentation to its clients means a greater demand for reliable technology with high uptime and performance, together with resilient and secure storage.

The Challenge

Jones Gough have seen considerable growth over the last few years and have expanded into a new custom built office. The practice has not got the skill sets in-house to support their IT network or the resource to manage their internal systems. Jones Gough approached BlueCoffee Networks to offer a fully managed IT helpdesk for their IT network. This consisted of a proactive approach from the BCN helpdesk.

The Solution

To get the IT Support and specialist expertise needed to optimise their evolving and increasingly sophisticated IT infrastructure, Jones Gough opted for BlueCoffee’s fully inclusive managed IT service. BlueCoffee pro-actively monitor Jones Gough servers to look for potential problems and rectify them before they happen, as well as offering a quick response to any IT issues.

BlueCoffee have also set up their backups to automate offsite every evening and carry out regular DR tests, which are crucial in protecting the large amounts of data that are required to be archived by legal practices.

The Benefits

BlueCoffee Networks specialise in getting the best value and total cost of ownership on behalf of all our supported clients.  Reduced downtime from proactive monitoring, together with increased network performance means that productivity and profitability are noticeable benefits.

Other benefits include:

•    IT cost control
•    Reduced downtime
•    Improved system performance
•    Resilient storage and data security
•    Network monitoring

“Jones Gough are delighted to say that BlueCoffee Networks are our trusted IT Support and Service Partner.  We rely on BlueCoffee to do everything IT from the hardware through to proactively supporting and monitoring all elements of the IT Network. It is great to be able to concentrate on the work that we are good at, and leave the IT issues to the experts.”

Networks Support for APS Salads

Network Support for APS Salads

The Client

APS Salads had a mission to grow and source delicious tomatoes grown in the most environmentally friendly way possible. A Pearson & Sons, (the founding company of APS Salads), specialise in growing and supplying outstanding, fresh, high quality tomatoes.

These values have remained throughout the business for over 60 years, focusing on growing produce  for flavour and quality in harmony with the beautiful British countryside.

Back in 1998 they were the pioneers of Combined Heat & Power (CHP) within the horticultural industry in the UK, which enabled them to generate their own electricity and sell it back to the national grid to power the local village in an environmentally efficient way.

The Challenge

APS Salads required an established IT service provider who could act as their dedicated IT department to provide them with a dedicated helpdesk and onsite technical resource, working to a published Service Level Agreement.

They required a fast response and resolution to their IT issues as downtime was particularly costly to their business operations, so 24/7 proactive monitoring of the key server functionality was essential.

In addition, APS Salads required the outsourced Helpdesk team to use a sophisticated remote management system that could access the Servers, PC’s, Macs and mobile devices on its network from any location.

The Solution

To attain the high levels of IT Support and Service Level required, APS picked BlueCoffee Networks’ fully inclusive IT support with proactive monitoring and remote management systems, together with onsite support and SLA.
We carried out a free network audit and provided a full recommendations report as part of the network support service.  As a result, we were able to tackle many inherent problems left by their previous IT provider, which APS had endured over an extended period of time.

The Benefits

As part of the network support solution, BlueCoffee Networks deployed its secure remote management support tools across the network, offering rapid response times without delays in waiting for onsite support, with a much lower carbon footprint.

In addition to the improved, productivity and profitability, there were many other important benefits, including:
•    Reduced downtime
•    Direct access to helpdesk and onsite support
•    Service level agreements
•    Microsoft trained and accredited technical staff
•    Improved system and user performance
•    Reduced environmental impact

“BlueCoffee Networks provide us with reliable, responsive IT support and services.  We have total confidence in their staff and we are totally dependant on them for the smooth running of our IT Systems. Considering the high levels and range of services that we use, we would regard BlueCoffee as excellent value for money.”

Hosted Network for Recital Consulting Recruitment

Hosted Network for Recital Consulting

The Client

Recital Consulting is a Recruitment business focused on the Information Technology sector. Their vision was to create a Recruitment Consultancy and not just another agency. They have achieved this by working closely with their clients and candidates, offering unprecedented levels of contact and ensuring that the Recital name becomes known in the marketplace for service excellence.

The Challenge

Recital came to BlueCoffee Networks as a new start up business. The company was started in the middle of a recession in April of 2011. Every start-up company needs to keep their overheads to a minimum, so a hosted solution fitted very well as there was no upfront capital expenditure cost for hardware or software.

The Solution

BlueCoffee Networks’ hosted solution incorporates all software licensing included to run a business. The model allows users to be able to run the most up-to- date Microsoft server and application software, which in turn provides consistency throughout the network. Also included are IT support, offsite backup in the cloud, anti-virus and anti-spam solution. All of this is based on a mirrored enterprise hardware platform ensuring reliability, resilience and 24×7 uptime.

The Benefits

BlueCoffee Networks provided Recital with a fully managed hosted solution which means that they have total peace of mind when it comes to their IT Network.
The benefits were:

•    No upfront costs
•    Software licensing included
•    Central management
•    High Availability
•    Offsite back up
•    Easy to scale up or down
•    IT Helpdesk Support
•    Secure and Resilient Network

“We think of BlueCoffee Networks as our complete IT department, from the hosted network and offsite backup services that they provide – through to the excellent levels of support…we always find them approachable, helpful and easy to work with.”

Hosted IT Network for Perspective Financial Group

Hosted Network for Perspective Financial Group

The Client

Perspective Financial Group Ltd is a top 15 national financial advisory group within the UK.  ‘Perspective,’ established in 2008, has seen considerable growth through the acquisition of 30 advising firms and now manages over £2.5bn of clients’ assets with an annual turnover in excess of £25m.  Perspective specialises in providing advice in both the private and corporate client arenas.  Perspective firms are authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority and the head office is based in Wilmslow, Cheshire.

The Challenge

Perspective is an enterprise business with over 24 current trading sites, geographically spread, which prior to the engagement with BlueCoffee have been operating on local server based environments.  This posed many logistical challenges for the group in addition to incurring  unnecessary time/cost expense.  Providing a centrally managed operating environment that fully complies with FSA regulations in regard to infrastructure, data protection, security and business continuity is essential.  The environment has to cater for specialist applications, be scalable and flexible to meet the demands of the business with continuing acquisitions and restructuring, facilitate ‘remote’ working whilst also being an economical solution.
Access to real-time data of high quality is critical to any business although often a challenge on this scale.  Any new infrastructure has to support this requirement whilst providing a portal to increase the engagement between the head office management team and the trading sites.  Perspective is proud of delivering the very best advice and service to all of its clients and any key strategic partner engaged would be pivotal in maintaining this.

The Solution

BlueCoffee delivered a hosted network to link all sites in to one managed central environment.  When new acquisitions are integrated into the group, BlueCoffee migrate all local server functions into the new corporate infrastructure.  This is done utilising remote datacentres which are fully compliant with industry requirements for the security of data and business continuity plans.  The new environment has increased business flexibility to allow secure working from any location, any time on almost any device.
Corporate branding, management controls, software implementations and upgrades can be easily deployed with minimal disruption and time cost expense.  The new environment has increased data resilience and effectiveness of redundant systems whilst also providing a flexible and secure solution.
It is essential for any cost to provide a significant benefit or return on investment.  Capital expenditure requirements for the replacement of servers, hardware, software licences and upgrades have all been minimised, easing the burden of budgeting and cash flow forecasting.  The infrastructure also provides the flexibility to restructure the business along with the associated cost-savings.

The Benefits

There is minimal capital expenditure up front as the pricing model is based on a defined cost per user per month.  This cost includes all hardware and operating software in the datacentre that is required to run an enterprise solution with multiple servers and SANs, including Microsoft licensing (Exchange and Office), email systems including protection against viruses, malware and spam.  BlueCoffee Networks’ IT helpdesk provides telephone, email and web-based support along with proactive monitoring.
BlueCoffee has made significant investment in secure, resilient datacentres and hosting technologies over the last few years on behalf of our clients in order to provide them with the following benefits:
•    Central management and control
•    24×7 System Availability
•    Offsite backups and server replication
•    Fully-scalable solutions
•    Ease of deployment, integration and upgrade

“The decision to make BlueCoffee a key strategic partner of the Perspective Group has proven to be invaluable.  They have surpassed our expectations in tackling the many challenges we placed in front of them.  The team of very experienced technical staff have been a pleasure to work with, have really gone the extra mile to look after us and have transitioned us on to an enviable infrastructure, to our demanding timescales, on budget and with minimal disruption. We can totally rely on their expertise and ‘can do’ attitude that is vital to us as a group that has grown quickly and will continue to do so. We believe that a robust and secure infrastructure is value enhancing in many ways and are delighted with the new solution.”