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Just as quickly as new technologies are developed to secure the information your organization is responsible for, cybercriminals are discovering new ways to get in. And to do it, they’re exploiting one thing – trust.

When you put ISG Technology to work for you, you don’t just put industry leading security experts on your team, you put security at the top of your priority list. You put the concern that someone might be selling you a short-sighted solution to the wayside. You put trust back where it belongs – on your side.

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Video: Modernizing IT to Grow Your Business

Why upgrade IT? Because there is a gap between what your current infrastructure allows you to do and what you need it to do. ISG Technology partners with technology leaders like HPE and Intel to help bring clients the right mix of on-premises, hosted, cloud and managed services to help you solve IT challenges and grow your business.

 

 

Video: IT Makes a Difference

A central catalyst in the shift of technology adoption is the massive increase in the power of IT investments. ISG Technology is the partner to get you there.

 

 

ISG Empowers Full-Service Radiology Practice

Industry: Healthcare

As a client service-oriented radiology practice in Missouri, Advanced Radiology was feeling the pain. “Stability and speed are crucial to our ability to provide services to our patients and their physicians,” says James Aldridge, Director of Radiology for the company. “We had reached a point where our existing infrastructure would inhibit our growth unless we invested a significant amount of capital into a dozen new servers, storage devices and software.”

“ISG helped us implement a major network upgrade with virtual servers in a secure underground environment.”

James Aldridge, Director of Radiology, Advanced Radiology

Challenge

Many businesses serving the healthcare industry are experiencing similar challenges. With new, rapid technological growth mandates, there’s a constant need for providers to upgrade to newer equipment and software. “The cost of equipment and the rate of change can cause not only an increase in capital expense, but a human expense in terms of training and time,” says Matt Jost, ISG account executive. “Technology has become a consuming factor for many healthcare providers, and that can distract from their core business focus.”

To help Advanced Radiology break through their barriers, ISG was able to test and evaluate their systems and propose different scenarios. “ISG’s knowledge and flexibility allowed us to tailor a solution that fit our budget and address each of our unique challenges,” says Aldridge. To start things off, ISG performed a complete network evaluation to determine best practices for the environment, taking the human element into consideration along with power, cooling, physical space and regulatory restrictions.

Solution

Based on the results of this evaluation, and the necessary requirements to meet the client’s business goals, ISG proposed two solutions. “One was to build out an internal data center with a virtual infrastructure,” says Jost. “The second was to reduce capital costs by migrating their IT infrastructure toward the ISG Data Center Service.”

“ISG helped us implement a major network upgrade with virtual servers in a secure underground environment, all connected to dual fiber rings, with a solid disaster recovery plan,” says Aldridge. “During this transition, we experienced very little downtime. They were able to simplify our backup process and help tighten our security.”

Results

The results were better than either ISG or Advanced Radiology could have hoped for. In addition to the improved reliability and the elimination of outages, ISG’s Data Center Service has provided the client with additional flexibility for virtual assets. It’s also enabled migrations to new and more productive software solutions, minus the downtime.

“Advanced Radiology has a newfound agility thanks to the ISG Data Center,” says Jost. “They can add users, servers or other virtual assets within minutes,” he says, “and all without making a capital expenditure.”

The client couldn’t agree more. “ISG was able to update us to newer server technology, including both hardware and software,” says Aldridge. “With a newer operating system implementation, we were able to speed up our networks. ISG has been instrumental in our ability to continue our growth and migrate into newer systems.”

Are you interested in learning more about how switching to ISG’s Data Center Services could help your business thrive? Contact your ISG representative today.

Solving Disaster Recovery with Virtualization

Industry: Education

Oklahoma City Public Schools (OKCPS) is a K-12 school district in central Oklahoma. OKCPS is comprised of 79 total schools, over 36,000 students and more than 4,400 employees.

Challenge

Like many large public school systems, OKCPS had various IT challenges. Dozens of sites to network, thousands of endpoints to support and limited IT staff to manage and maintain the sprawling environment. Worries about power consumption, server sprawl and the high travel/maintenance costs of supporting a distributed server environment had increased as well.

Solution

OKCPS has an experienced and talented Network Services team but they felt needed a technology partner with deep expertise in Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery solutions. OKCPS engaged ISG Technology, a technology solution provider with extensive experience helping clients solve BC/DR challenges.

As a starting point, ISG worked with the Network Services team to perform a detailed Assessment of the OKCPS server, storage and network infrastructure. The Assessment yielded a solution design which would not only solve the DR challenge but consolidate the sprawling OKCPS infrastructure down to working data centers. The two data centers could then be configured to work together in production while providing failover capabilities in the event of a site failure.

The design included virtualization of numerous OKCPS server workloads using VMware ESX on HP C-class Blades. Once virtualized, workloads become “portable,” since virtual machines are not tied to physical hardware.

The design also included a pair of EMC CLARiiON storage arrays teamed with EMC RecoverPoint for bi-directional data replication between the two data centers. Replication assures that if one data center has an outage, data loss, or disaster the other data center can assume full function.

To simplify the recovery process, ISG recommended VMware Site Recovery Manager (SRM), a DR tool for virtualized environments which leverages EMC replication capabilities to automate the flow of the recovery process. SRM eliminates complex manual recovery steps and minimized the need for human intervention during a disaster — effectively a “push button” DR solution. SRM also provides a non-disruptive testing environment, so the plan can be validated and/or amended as necessary.

The final solution component was for Backup at each site using Data Domain appliances to provide an additional layer of data protection. Data Domain is a tapeless backup solution which provides industry leading data “deduplication” which can dramatically decrease storage capacity requirements and costs.

Results

Implementation of the solution went smoothly, according to Steve Washam, Director of Network Services for OKCPS. “The project went very well. Our team did a great job. Dean Coit (ISG Solution Architect) went above and beyond the call of duty to help us.”

“ISG’s expertise was critical to our success.”

Steve Washam, Director of Network Services for OKCPS

The key result achieved was a robust DR plan which can be tested, amended and validated during business hours without having to take down production systems. The new DR plan also provides detailed test reports which can be provided to auditors upon request.

Another notable benefit of the solution was a significant reduction in power consumption and energy costs. Prior to implementation, OKCPS had reached the capacity limits of the existing power plant. But the virtualized environment reduced power requirements and eliminated the need to invest in a new, larger UPS.

A final benefit resulted from the consolidation and centralization. The bloated travel and maintenance costs of supporting the former distributed environment were all but eliminated in the new solution.

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Managed Services Solve Multiple Challenges

Industry: Finance

In the past, all of OSBC’s file and email servers were kept in the office of the institution’s director of IT, but eventually OSBC outgrew its in-house approach:

Challenge

  • It had high data security requirements, putting a premium on safe handling of data and regular monitoring of infrastructure.
  • Its building was normally shut down on weekends to save power and energy. Accordingly, temperatures inside the server room could rise to almost 90 degrees Fahrenheit by Monday morning while the air conditioning was off.
  • Overall, the OSBC needed professional IT services that were economically feasible and wouldn’t require building their own data centers from scratch.

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The Bama Companies See Value In Virtualized Desktops

Industry: Hospitality

Founded in 1927,  The  Bama Companies,  Inc., is an innovator of wholesome bakery products, such as hand-held pies, biscuits, buns, pie shells, and pizza crust. Bama serves the Quick Service Restaurants, Fast Casual, Casual Dining, and Broadline Channels of the Foodservice Industry for the largest, most well-known restaurant chains on the planet.

Click to read the case study

Challenge

Bama had aging PC’s spread across their environment; they were experiencing high support costs, and needed an efficient and cost-effective plan to refresh their PC fleet.

In addition, they wanted to enhance the performance of their user associates Windows desktop environment.

They were also looking for ways to improve process management and deliver secure desktops to their manufacturers and outside the company to employees around the world. Finally, Bama hoped to provide users the same environment across various remote devices.

Solution

Eric Spille, Manager of Technical Services for Bama, turned to ISG Technology for assistance with this company-wide project. ISG worked out a program to move the company to Citrix XenDesktop Enterprise so that desktops could be delivered virtually to associates.

ISG conducted an initial pilot with 25 users to provide a proof-of-concept. Based on that success, Spille decided to expand the XenDesktop solution out to all users.

With ISG’s expertise, Bama installed redundant Citrix NetScaler controllers as access brokers to enhance the XenDesktop delivery and significantly improve the user interface.  Additionally, Bama’s Exchange environment is secured by the NetScalers, which handle the security and access processes now. The Netscalers keep their data safe.

Results

Bama replaced old desktops with thin clients for an immediate cost savings and a reduction of their total cost of ownership. Refresh cycles were extended from four to eight years, which doubled the lifespan of their hardware—at half the cost.

“What made everything easier for us was the impressive level of Citrix expertise at ISG,” said Spille. “ISG knows Citrix really well. We felt very fortunate to have access to someone of that caliber. I don’t think anyone in this area even comes close.”

User experience was improved. “We can provide our employees with a Windows desktop with 12 seconds of login,” said Spille. “That’s impressive.”

Bama also experienced several incremental benefits.  “While our main goal was to put a thin client at everyone’s desk, we always struggled with patches in the past,” said Spille. “This new upgrade allowed us to provide over 300 users with a single image. That’s a huge savings and process improvement for us.”

Thanks to the Netscalers, Bama also experienced an increase in data security. Executives and sales associates who access Bama’s network remotely—regardless of device—are only viewing the data they need, without having data reside on the local device itself. Company data remains safely in the data center.

Bama was impressed with ISG’s commitment to the project. “Having a single point of contact really helped the project run smoothly. Hal Davey was truly an advocate for us. ISG asked the right questions,” said Spille. “This allowed us to proactively avoid issues, and get it right the first time.”

Hosted Voice Enables Mobility For Legasus Group, LC

Industry: Business Management

Legasus Group, LC is an advisory firm that works with families in business to perpetuate and sustain family enterprises. Smoothing transitions from generation to generation, Legasus Group advisors integrate relational and managerial sciences within a living systems model to better utilize the potential and talents of all stakeholders.

Click to read the case study

Challenge

Since Legasus Group teams frequently travel to their client sites, they require a mobility solution that helps them access their records and files on the road. Previously they had used a local IT service provider and another provider for internet and voice, creating difficulties with maintaining a high level of quality of service.
“There was a lot of finger pointing,” said Matt Kuzma, Chief Operating Officer at Legasus Group. “We had a hard time resolving issues through to completion, because no one was taking responsibility.”

Solution

Legasus Group became familiar with ISG Technology after attending an overview of ISG Hosted Voice and bandwidth offerings, which they felt was a good fit with their strategic goals. They put out a bid for distributed access, so that their team could work remotely with the same experience as if they were in the office. Legasus Group detailed required business outcomes, and asked bidders to submit their best recommendation.
“We decided to pursue the relationship with ISG. It was very intriguing to have a single service provider that could address all our service needs,” said Kuzma. “Their Hosted Voice solution gave us powerful features that help our team accomplish their work and remain in touch while traveling.”
ISG delivered bandwidth connectivity, a new server, and rolled out their business class Hosted Voice solution. This was accomplished in a one-month transition timeframe.

Results

Kuzma set an aggressive cutover goal at first, and worked with ISG to put the planning in place. The team worked back and forth to give enough time to get the server up and rolling and all relevant permissions migrated to the cloud. “I wasn’t expecting a magic wand. The ISG team worked to find resolution for a few issues that cropped up. They diagnosed the root problem to find a quick resolution,” said Kuzma.

Getting Hosted Voice implemented went smoothly, and all the phones were swapped out at once.

“When we have technical problems, we call or email the issue to their Support Center and ISG will diagnose to fix the issue. They send a complete ticket with all the details documented, and the techs are knowledgeable and courteous,” said Kuzma.

“We have a hybrid model accounting software that is server based, and our response times have increased since the move. Best of all, ISG has lifted the burden of managing the server off of our plate.”

The Client’s View

“ISG listened closely up front to understand our needs, and then delivered a partnership solution that makes the most sense for Legasus Group. With continued support from ISG Hosted Voice, our team can get their jobs done while they are on the road.”

Matt Kuzma
Chief Operating Officer
Legasus Group