Many SMEs want technology to support growth, but don’t want to make large capital investments or enter into long-term commitments. Typically, these organisations are looking for partners to support their growth, within an appropriate commercial framework. This often means moving to cloud computing, which allows them to grow their business cost-effectively, while keeping customer data secure.
SMEs also look to work with technology suppliers that they trust to deliver most of their IT requirements. The key to successful engagement is for the supplier to understand the customer’s growth strategy, approaching it as part of an extended team to make it a success.
One company that has bought into the supplier partnership approach is footwear and outdoor wear brand, Hunter Boot Ltd. In a move away from a physical IT infrastructure into a virtualised space, Hunter wanted to increase the availability of some key systems and applications.
IT service provider, Pulsant worked with Hunter to understand its requirements and anticipated outcomes. One of the company’s critical needs was scalability – the ability to cost effectively-add to the virtualised infrastructure as and when required.
Pulsant supplied Hunter with colocation services, connectivity and managed security. All of the company’s ERP servers are now residing in Pulsant’s Newbridge data centre facility in Edinburgh.
“The facility is an excellent fit for us, as is the solution,” explained Stuart Lloyd, infrastructure architect, Hunter Boot. “Newbridge is well managed and in the ideal location, enabling us to host our systems from within that virtualised environment.”
The installation went smoothly with the connectivity delivering a high capacity service to Hunter very quickly.
Speed of delivery must be counterbalanced by a focus on security. Due to the majority of Hunter’s IT infrastructure being virtualised, the business connects to the internet through colocation services. Consequently, security was especially important. In line with this, Pulsant provided the managed firewall services to ensure their infrastructure was properly protected. Following a refresh of Hunter’s disaster recovery and business continuity plans, Pulsant worked with the company to deliver backup-as-a-service, through its partner, Asigra.
“Collaborating with Pulsant we realised that on-site tape backup wasn’t the best option. We needed something that was easily configurable and easy to upgrade when we add new stores and more data,” said Lloyd.
A management server was introduced into the virtualised environment allowing the Hunter team to add backups to individual servers. Hunter is finding benefit in the managed backup solution, particularly around file restoration, as well as the time taken to maintain the process.
“The entire process happens so seamlessly. In two years we’ve moved from a physical server-based company to a mostly virtualised environment and Pulsant has been instrumental in helping us achieve that,” concluded Lloyd.
It’s another compelling example of how SMEs benefit from working with highly-skilled IT service providers that guide them on this journey and consequently deliver enhanced flexibility and streamlined growth.