This Offshore Services Contractor is a highly successful local business which has grown significantly over the past 10 years, and has recently been incorporated into a global parent company. Bizcare IT Services has been the Information Technology support partner of the business throughout its period of major growth and continues in this role now that it is integrated into the global group. Bizcare IT Services was first engaged by this business to assist with their IT requirements when they had just three employees, located in a single office in Welshpool. The organisation grew considerably during the following years and Bizcare IT Services partnered with the management team to ensure that the ongoing IT requirements scaled to meet the needs of this growing enterprise.
This growth included the addition of remote offices in northwest Western Australia and in the Northern Territory – which were integrated into the company network. Proprietary software was commissioned by the business to meet certain requirements and Bizcare IT Services ensured all users, local and remote, were able to access this software as required. Following the business’s sale to a global leader in offshore services, Bizcare IT Services has worked closely with the global IT team to ensure that the Australasian operations have been integrated into the global organisation with minimal disruption to day-to-day operations. Bizcare IT Services continues to provide local support for the Australasian operations of this business.
Internet Security Policies
This client provides 3½ star accommodation in central Perth. They have been a Bizcare IT Services client since 2008, over which time we have provided ongoing IT support and maintenance services. As a 24 hours per day, 7 days a week operation servicing tourists and business guests it is essential that network infrastructure is appropriately maintained and supported. Bizcare IT Services were initially contracted to resolve continual issues being suffered with internet access and to assess the existing infrastructure’s appropriateness for their needs. The hotel runs a wireless network as a chargeable service for their guests alongside their own internal wired and wireless network. Bizcare IT Services strengthened and secured both of these facilities for trouble-free operations.
As a hotel industry client, this business has a number of particular security requirements which Bizcare IT Services have worked to accommodate fully. in particular, this client uses a “locked down” operating environment for its workstations to provide optimum security and eliminate unauthorised use potential. Internet access from Workstations is filtered according to a policy developed to ensure only intended business use can be made of company facilities. Bizcare IT Services’ Management and Monitoring Systems have proven invaluable in ensuring maximum uptime for this 24/7 operation. Major IT upgrades have been planned and executed to also minimise downtime for this “always open” business.
Computer Aided Design Specialist
Adapting IT Needs to Rapid Organisation Growth
This major Computer Aided design (CAD) specialist is a long-standing client of Bizcare IT Services. Initially Bizcare IT Services were engaged on an ad-hoc basis for this client, assisting where required. In these early times, the client utilised offsite POP3 mail accounts and a local file server running Linux. One of Bizcare IT Services’ first assignments was to develop a robust backup solution for the client’s data. Bizcare proposed a customised system, which encompassed the Linux file-server and utilised a staging process to bring the data back into a more adaptable filing system. This allowed for regular backups, which did not interfere with day-to-day operations so that client staff were able to continuously access data. As is the case with many design companies, data security is an ongoing priority of this highly data-intensive business – and this is especially true when handling proprietary data for large mining organisations.
Over the years of Bizcare’s engagement with this client, the company has experienced very rapid growth associated with its success in winning contracts in resource related projects in Western Australia. Now there are almost 100 personnel in the company, with many of them being highly specialised engineers, architects, and technical personnel. The requirements of these personnel in terms of IT infrastructure could not be more exacting, crucial, or closely linked to the success of the company. In addition to the increase in the company’s size, it has evolved in terms of its network complexity. The operations are now split over multiple metropolitan offices as well as a remote location site-office and offshore engineering and drafting office.
Bizcare has implemented a “fully virtualised” server and network solutions for all client offices and locations, including a point-to-point link to unify the networks of two Perth offices. Virtualised configuration allows multiple “logical” servers to reside on a single physical hardware platform – thus increasing efficiency and providing management benefits. In addition to the exacting computational requirements to run high-powered CAD software on a large number of workstations, a major operational issue for this Company is the management of its huge volume of CAD data. Bizcare has set up appropriate hardware, software, and operational systems to manage, replicate, backup, and secure all the companies data, totalling almost 12TB.
Industrial Steel Fabricator
This Industrial Steel Fabricator is a mid-size client in terms of its IT infrastructure complexity, but has a number of unique requirements that have required particular attention from the team at Bizcare IT Services. The industrial area in which this client is located is not well served by copper wire telephony or optical cable data infrastructure. Unfortunately it is in a “slow zone” with only ADSL 1 services available, which has over time become less and less adequate for the needs of the business. To address this, Bizcare has designed and implemented a solution using a point-to-point wireless link to a remote location with a superior internet connection. Appropriate data router devices and network settings were put in place to allow the client to achieve the required speed of internet connection, despite the constraints of its local connection.
The Fabricator is also appropriately sensitive to the requirement to fully secure its critical business data. After operating an offsite backup solution using manually swapped storage devices, the client was keen to investigate a fully automated solution using offsite backups “over the wire”. Now that a fast internet connection is available the client has migrated to a cloud-based backup solution using modern continuous, incremental, backup technology. These backups occur automatically every hour so as to minimise the amount of data to be transferred and to reduce infrastructure costs. All critical data is now housed in secure off-site facilities. These facilities are co-located for additional security of data and are continuously monitored by Bizcare to ensure the integrity of the backups.
Earthworks and Construction Contractor
Managing Network Growth And Office Relocation
This major Earthworks Contractor has been a long-standing client of Bizcare. We have supported their IT systems over a number of years of significant growth that has seen the Company expand to almost ten times its initial staff and has resulted in a major increase in its IT needs. Bizcare was initially contracted to provide support to a previously installed server. This server had been sourced from another organisation and was providing inconsistent performance and was not achieving the results that the company had anticipated. We were contracted to conduct an in-depth audit of the existing infrastructure and to make recommendations for their requirements at that time and with a view to future requirements.
After extensive investigation of their systems and consultation with management a report was prepared which highlighted that key elements of the server configuration were non-standard and this was resulting in ongoing instability. This report also detailed a likely expansion path that could be implemented should growth of the company be as anticipated. These recommendations were accepted and work commenced. Bizcare reconfigured the initial server for the Company and has managed the network through the various stages of IT infrastructure expansion that have been required as its operations expanded. We have assisted the Company with a major office relocation due to its growth, and have set up an IT solution for its remote location branch office.
The Company runs a fully-virtualised server environment, based on a head office with Microsoft Small Business Server, Terminal Server (Remote Desktop Services) and File Server. The Company also runs a branch office server at its remote location site, with a split directory structure to manage data across this distributed network. All stages of the planning, design, installation, and configuration of this IT environment have been undertaken by the professional team from Bizcare. Part of the operational structure of the company revolves around extremely remote sites that have very limited communications facilities. Bizcare has been able to develop and manage solutions to ensure that these extremely remote sites can be integrated into the wider network.
Bizcare provides a Managed IT Services solution for the entire IT infrastructure of this Earthworks Contractor including telephony and fibre connected internet access with a point-to-point connection to their remote office. We make extensive use of our remote diagnostics and support technology to manage its remote site systems, minimising the need for more expensive on-site support visits. Bizcare is now working with the client to plan the next stage of its IT systems evolution. This will involve using data replication technology to duplicate and synchronise the data residing on its head office and remote site installations.
Specialist Human Resources Agency
Server Virtualisation For Efficiency And Flexibility
When this HR Company first contacted Bizcare IT Services it had a newly installed server, which was not living up to reliability expectations. In the HR industry, 24-hour instant access to email is crucial for fulfilling client requests – and to be offline for any significant period is just not tolerable! Bizcare technicians assessed the state of the HR Company’s IT infrastructure, and found that the hardware itself was of good quality. However, it was evident that there were significant issues in the way the server had been configured and managed in the past – to the extent that it was giving unreliable service. Key elements of its internal software configuration were non-standard and not supported by the software vendors, and this was resulting in ongoing instability. Bizcare put to the client a two-stage plan to resolve the problems and, once this was accepted, work commenced.
Immediately, steps were taken to stabilise the company’s current IT infrastructure by optimising its settings within the constraints of its existing configuration. An interim management process was put in place to maximise the availability of all crucial services including email. This provided relief for the client who could now continue running their business with confidence, knowing that emails were getting through and core operations were reliable. This interim solution also provided Bizcare with the opportunity to further analyse the configuration that it had inherited and do more planning for the second stage of the process. After additional consultation with the client, Bizcare commenced a full rebuild of the HR Company’s server. A best-practice, industry-standard, approach was taken to all aspects of the server configuration, to deliver a “fully virtualised” solution.
A virtualised configuration allows multiple “logical” servers to reside on a single physical hardware platform – thus increasing efficiency and providing management benefits. The inherited configuration had been partially virtualised in an unstable, non-standard configuration. To move the client’s critical business operations to the new configuration, with no interruption to business operations, required careful planning. First Bizcare provided a loan server, which was configured to accept the Company’s applications and data. Over a number of weeks, with work scheduled over the weekend to minimise disruption to normal operations, a three-stage migration was performed. Initially, the applications were transferred to the loan server and verified for interim operation. Next, the Company’s original server operating system and applications were rebuilt from scratch to comply with vendor standards and industry best practice.
Finally, all applications and data were transferred back to this newly created highly stable, flexible environment and normal business operations resumed. The company now enjoys a fast, reliable IT platform that is configured for efficient operation and flexibility for its future needs. Subsequently, Bizcare has also installed an automated cloud-based data backup mechanism for this Company’s crucial HR client data. Bizcare has also put in place a fixed-price Managed IT Services solution for this Company and makes use of remote management and support technology to ensure the ongoing stability of its entire IT infrastructure. The Company can now focus on its highly successful specialist HR consultancy activities, sure in the knowledge that its systems and data are properly managed, optimised, and secured.