Performance Improvement

Managed IT 2.0: from proactive to predictive

At ROCK, we have long prided ourselves on our proactive approach and on our willingness to go the extra mile for our clients. For some time, I felt that this was the gold standard. That looking that bit deeper into solutions, enhancing their robustness and tailoring them to clients resulted in the best possible service. In our strive to always be at the forefront of the managed IT industry, we have come to the realisation that this is no longer the case. 

The momentum that is driving advancements within the field of technology seems to have reached something close to what could be deemed to be terminal velocity. In turn, developments are so frequent that proactivity is now akin to reactivity: change is so frequent and organisational setups are so unique that proactivity is needed to offer solutions that are merely fit-for-purpose. In the modern era, it is predictive approaches that will separate the acceptable from the exceptional.

Predictive approaches will, on the face of things, appear similar to their proactive counterpart. Both are reliant upon a forward-thinking outlook, but whereas a proactive approach reviews and monitors infrastructure, practices etc. to optimise, fix shortcomings and address emerging issues, predictive outlooks take things further. Broader data sets and knowledge bases are leveraged to forecast an organisation’s likely future needs; to determine the changes that will need to be implemented and enacting them in advance of these needs becoming apparent.

It is this epiphany that has brought about the creation of ROCK’s Premier IT Management service, a new offering defined by a predictive approach rather than proactive one – and several key traits.

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Author:

Rob Dance
Rob Dance Founder & CEO

The bigger picture

As part of our IT management solution, ROCK build dashboards that amalgamate disparate data sources in order to monitor and maintain the performance of various systems. With our Premier IT Management service, further salient metrics are identified and monitored so that we can, by also considering clients’ practices and objectives, identify upgrades and alterations that will improve performance.

The in-depth understanding ROCK glean for all of our clients is also leveraged to further enhance the services our premier clients receive. Our onboarding process is modified to fit around our client's HR policies and processes, so that prominent information is collected that allows us to tailor reporting mechanisms and facilitate quicker resolutions when support is required. This is complemented by IT operations management teams that can be completely dedicated to individual clients and are therefore able to garner a truly holistic understanding of their organisations. These individuals can even be based at a client’s site if required.

Additionally, our incident response procedures take a distinctly different approach. We not only resolve problems, but also identify and, wherever possible, address their root cause. In the event that a permanent fix is not practicable (usually due to a wider organisational or third party issue), we develop procedures and contingencies that both minimise their negative effects and ensure swift resolution.

Informing tech strategy

As well as reviewing metrics in order to identify infrastructural upgrades our clients are likely to require in the near future, ROCK also scrutinise other metrics to develop strategies that will improve organisational resiliency, deliver more productive practices and, ultimately, increase the likelihood of success.

Rather than simply implementing backup and recovery procedures, for example, ROCK will also look to refine these processes in order to both automate backups and streamline recovery processes to enable ever more expeditious data retrieval. In the event that networks are unresponsive and updating them is problematic, we’ll look to implement software-defined alternatives. We can even create policies that address employee-generated gaps in your cyber security setup.

As the ways in which tech can improve an organisation are virtually infinite, so too are the number of progressions ROCK can identify and implement off the back of our Premier IT Management service.

Reduce supplier risk

Reviewing resources such as software licences, virtualised infrastructures etc., is a laborious and time-consuming but simultaneously essential task. The need to move to alternative vendors in order to improve performance and eliminate unnecessary expenditure are key functions concerning performance optimisation, after all.

With in-depth industry knowledge and pre-established relationships with numerous vendors spanning the entirety of the tech-sphere, ROCK can both identify the most appropriate providers and even negotiate more favourable deals on a client’s behalf.

Additionally, with the connected world bringing about a myriad of additional threats to organisational well-being, it must be noted that a new supplier can – if their infrastructure has been compromised – leak data pertaining to their clients.

In order to address this, ROCK undertake dark web scans and constantly monitor suppliers to determine if cyber criminals are in possession of any information of theirs and in turn allow for action to be taken to protect our client's organisation.

Empowering staff

A 2016 study undertaken by professional learning experts Training Industry revealed that, whilst businesses may be investing in new and potentially powerful technology, this financial investment must be teamed with employee training to be truly effective: just 10% of the employees they polled felt that they were capable of using the digital assets their employers provided.¹

In order to address this, ROCK have developed our Learning Management System. Featuring a variety of online courses compiled by experienced engineers, developers and decision-makers, this tool allows employees to develop baseline digital skills as well as those needed to fully leverage the benefits of new software and other forms of tech.

Our learning facilities also help our clients to secure their organisations through effective and engaging cyber security training modules. Research has shown that 80% of cyber security incidents are attributable to human error² but, with ROCK’s GCHQ-accredited cyber security training courses accessible via our Learning Management System, employees can discover precisely how they can help to secure their employers’ digital infrastructures. 

It’s always evolving

Reviewing client feedback and identifying means of improving our services is a well-established process at ROCK. Like all other existing features that have been incorporated into our new offering, though, they have been amended and enriched.

Our revamped feedback collection framework is designed to deliver us a more holistic understanding of not only how our services can be improved in general, but also each client’s unique pain points. This allows us to make unique and thoroughly bespoke adjustments – to deliver a service that is continuously improving on a granular, client-centric basis.

To find out more about ROCK’s Premier Managed IT service, email us on [email protected] or call us on 0344 272 2288.

References:

  1. What the digital skills gap is secretly costing your organization and employees (2016) Available at https://trainingindustry.com/magazine/issue/what-the-digital-skills-gap-is-secretly-costing-your-organization-and-employees/ [Accessed 25/9/19] 
  2. Kaspersky (2020) Kaspersky Security Awareness. Available at https://www.kaspersky.co.uk/enterprise-security/security-awareness [accessed on 07/12/19]

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