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IT Infrastructure Improvements

A 700-site Crown Corporation Gets a WAN, LAN and Telephony Refresh

Our client, the telecom/data department of a large Canadian Crown corporation, recognized a need for a more functional, cost-effective voice and data infrastructure for their Canada-wide IT network.

After helping our client develop a new strategic direction and long-term positioning strategy, we designed and implemented an IT infrastructure with increased capacity and flexibility, and effected $30M in IT operational cost savings over the following five years – all delivered on time and within budget.

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Challenges

We faced challenges going in on multiple fronts, including the need for clearly defined network requirements for a very large, very diverse group of users. We needed to identify state-of-the-art, flexible solutions for each of the 700 facilities across Canada and ensure that vendors and technology converged into a single, homogenous network. The network had to be secure and scalable to provide for future technologies (such as QoS and VoIP).

We needed to determine the optimal system based on each site’s needs and on capacity vs. cost, negotiate the appropriate Service Level Agreement with all vendors, and then manage the implementation with the least disruption possible.

And all at a significant overall cost saving, which would largely be realized through the reduction of their ongoing operational and maintenance costs.

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Strategic Actions

Once we identified and documented the voice and data requirements for all 700 sites, we developed the enterprise-wide network that would deliver the optimal infrastructure refresh.

We developed RFPs and took them to the market, then assisted with the incoming proposal evaluations and vendor selections. With vendors defined, we obtained fair market pricing, negotiated contracts, including Service Level Agreements, and worked with the vendors to finalize WAN, LAN and telephony solutions.

Program and project management was provided to implement the refresh as thoroughly and efficiently as possible. We began by assisting our client to create implementation schedules in order to minimize the duration of the project and the extent and impact of interruptions. We then developed complex project management tracking tools specific to our client’s multi-stage refresh plan in order to keep the implementation on track. We developed “Take-to-Company” information (describing what was changing, when and how it would affect them) for all of our client’s employees and Work Breakdown Structures for all vendors and project tasks. Project governance, change request processes, risk logs and project reports were developed to complete the client’s IT infrastructure refresh on time and on budget.

All non-IP network segments were eliminated in order to provide a Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS), fully meshed network with any-to-any connectivity and site-to-site Virtual Private Network (VPN).

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Optimal Results

This client received an improved voice and data network with both increased capacity and functionality and decreased operating costs. The new network integrates more than 700 locations and provides a needed common user experience. The Canada-wide telecommunications system is more cost effective overall and, in particular, has significantly lower maintenance and ongoing costs.

Through fair market pricing, careful vendor selection and strong contract negotiation, we secured IT infrastructure solutions that were optimized to the requirements of each client location and that were sustainable by the vendors.

Designing and implementing an optimal and scalable system for this corporation provided it with a new, up-to-date IT network infrastructure, allowing our client to grow and move forward without voice and data network restrictions, and with significant savings in IT infrastructure operating costs.