10th June 2013
At VPW we're passionate about helping customers improve IT - it's part of our "Making IT Easier" thinking, so when we were asked to help the Ilfracombe Branch of the Devon County Council Adult & Community Learning improve the reliability and robustness of IT, we naturally wanted to help them.
Having previously worked with Devon ACL at the Exmouth branch to remove the pain of unreliable Broadband and Wireless Networking, we were asked to go and look at the Ilfracombe issues too. Wisely, the team wanted to get our comprehensive and specialist advice on the entire IT system to help them understand what was causing them pain - affecting learners, tutors and centre staff, so they took our Small Business IT Audit to get things started. Our team visited and reviewed the existing systems and sent back a report highlighting the key areas of concern, the relative importance of each recommendation and indication of cost allowing the centre to make an informed decision on how to proceed. As Ilfracombe ACL are part of Devon County Council, a public sector organisation, it is important that money spent is "well spent".
Having agreed a plan of works with the centre, VPW carried out a "long day" maintenance session coordinating the change of IT infrastructure, connectivity and ancillary items to avoid disruption to the existing training & learning schedule. The schedule was tight and inflexible as IT services had to be operational the next day for active learning so getting it right first time was critical.
To make IT easier for the centre VPW deployed it's Managed Broadband connectivity, sat on a managed network offering better reliability and speed, added additional cabled networking where required, deployed a managed wireless network improving coverage throughout the centre, completed a range of "IT Healthcheck" tasks to make system performance better - not a simple task when the computers have such diverse needs on any given day due to the mixed training undertaken.
Interestingly during the initial discussions, the centre were a little concerned that our IT Healthcheck service might be like those they'd experienced previously where a company comes in, runs Windows Update, does a Disk Defrag and leaves. VPW explained that whilst these items have a place, we look at how we can help the customer make a lasting difference - and by taking our proactive Pre-Paid IT Support plans those minor niggles that arise from time to time can be taken care of too.
Sandra Coates, the Centre Manager had told us during our IT Audit that one of the main pain points for them was dissatisfied learners and tutors frustrated by system problems. After our works had completed, we asked the centre to monitor reliability and end user satisfaction and let us know if they still saw issues anywhere so we could look at any residual problems. When we did follow up, Sandra had this to say:
We understand! The good news is that at VPW we believe that IT should be easier, and our mission is to help companies just like yours get more from IT, reduce hassle and help you take advantage of technology. Our team are passionate about working with you to understand the problems and challenges you face and working alongside you to address them so you spend less time wanting to throw your computers out of the window, and more time looking after your customers and improving your business - call us on 01392 950 950 and see how we can help your business.
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