Gale & Phillipson (G&P) is an independent firm of experienced and highly qualified Financial Advisers with over 110 years’ history of providing financial services to clients across Yorkshire and the North East. Hicel started supporting their IT infrastructure in 2010. “We needed someone who had in-depth knowledge of our back-office systems and Hicel came highly recommended,” explained G&P office manager, Sue White.
G&P’s IT platform is based around Microsoft Small Business Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 running SQL Server 2008. There are approximately 30 PCs across the organisation utilised by 26 users. Like any organisation in the 21st Century, G&P is dependent on its IT investment to ensure it can provide its customers with a high level of service and Hicel now help in making sure that uptime is kept to a maximum.
This involves looking after all aspects of the system from general administration, checking server performance, backups, antivirus management, Internet access, Spam management, database management and security updates through to hardware support and advice for PCs and peripherals. Importantly, Hicel also takes care of software support for all their applications, ensuring G&P need only make one call to get any software problem solved. This covers support for Microsoft operating systems and Office applications and Adobe software.
In addition, more specialised help is provided by Hicel for the specific client and financial Management package Avelo Advisor Office, O & M systems, Scanfile and Mortgage Brain. “Support is immediate,” said Sue. “When we have a day-to-day problem they are very quick in identifying the source and fixing it. As a result, we have had no real downtime since Hicel took over our IT support.”
Migration to the new platform was then organized to start late afternoon and continue through the evening to ensure minimum disruption to Strachan’s day-to-day operations. The new server was first setup in-situ and an existing additional Windows 2008 server was transferred to the new domain. It was then possible to amend the applications and folder permissions as required as well as dealing with reconfiguring the printers.
Once this initial stage had been successfully completed a checklist was used to help in the task of removing all existing PCs from the old domain and adding them to the new. Finally, a new SonicWALL SSL VPN router was installed and an old SBS2003 server was rebuilt as a Windows 2003 server that would be used as a Terminal Server to facilitate access for remote workers.