Case Study: Winter Scott escape from under a dark cloud
Winter Scott LLP is a London-based firm of maritime and commercial lawyers specialising in Charterparty disputes, maritime and admiralty law, insurance and commercial litigation.
Winter Scott requires a smooth, responsive and efficient running IT infrastructure so its staff members can successfully conduct international business. Unfortunately this was not the case since the practice had migrated of all its IT hardware and software into a public cloud facility. This move resulted in an IT environment that was proving unfit for Winter Scott’s purposes and the promises of high performance made by the cloud supplier were not being delivered.
The practice was experiencing multiple IT problems that negatively impacted on operational performance. These included loss of emails, inoperable key applications and low overall speed of daily operations. There was an inability to cope with the variety and volume of international emails and the staff PCs were also frequently freezing.
The other major concern was that Winter Scott’s ‘local’ on-premise IT systems and networks were not being supported or monitored, which exposed them to potential security threats and compliance penalties. Supplier reactions were unresponsive and there was no structured disaster recovery provision in place to cater for outages.
Winter Scott recognised the need to urgently address its technology infrastructure problems, ensuring that it became more time-critical. A specialist IT provider was therefore sought – one with a strong, successful track record in building, managing and supporting IT systems.
Supplier selection was helped by the fact that Winter Scott had previously experienced the services of the IT services provider, Zhero, and, from its past performance, it was deemed the best fit by the practice.
Zhero created an entire IT network and high speed fibre communications infrastructure for Winter Scott – delivered as a hybrid private cloud service. The practice’s key data and applications, which includes email, voice dictation and document management systems, are now fully managed and can be swiftly accessed and operated – without delay.
To manage the new environment, Zhero use leading-edge tools to deliver an instant response, 24×7 IT helpdesk, direct-to-engineer support, a managed service and monitoring for Winter Scott workstations, servers and firewalls – which are leased by the practice as a service. This results in resource costs savings, improved IT performance and reliability. To improve IT accessibility for Winter Scott staff, Zhero enables full access to all key systems, using any device – over the internet and corporate networks.
Winter Scott appreciates that its data must always be secure and available. Zhero therefore provide a disaster recovery platform with failover facilities, via multiple-data centres, to protect the practice from the impact of an incident. This ensures that in the event of an outage, Winter Scott can continue business by accessing its rescue IT systems – from any location. Winter Scott’s is also protected with a cloud-based, data backup system, strong email & web security and encrypted communications – as well as an email archive – to ensure data is safely retained for compliance purposes.
Winter Scott now possesses a consistently stable, secure, and leading-edge technology environment that liberates its staff to focus on running the business. The practice has significantly improved operational performance and efficiencies – compared to running IT in-house. Zhero’s proactive approach to IT management and support means that the practice can rely on them to keep IT running – whatever challenges they face.
Elizabeth Baxendale, Head of Accounts, Winter Scott, said, “Zhero has become our IT department and ensures that all areas of our technology and communication infrastructure operate at optimum levels – and is backed by the reassurance that it’s being expertly managed. We also appreciate their high levels of service, IT expertise and advice. Ultimately, we know we have an IT environment that can properly support our future growth.”