K3 Managed Services conveys IT expertise to materials handling company RJ Herbert

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RJ Herbert is a high quality British manufacturer with over 35 years experience in supplying materials handling systems to the agricultural, fresh pack, food processing, waste management, airport and logistics industries. The Norfolk business provides a full manufacturing and supply solution from initial design and layout to building the equipment, installation and ongoing support. All this work is performed at a single site employing 140 staff.

The K3 Managed Services team began working with RJ Herbert in 2009 when the company needed to upgrade its CAD system and Impact Award software. In charge of RJ Herbert's busy IT department is manager Lawrence Defty. He says that the decision to bring the K3 team in was driven by a wish to consolidate the company's IT process, while investing in an IT infrastructure that would align itself with the growth challenges facing the business as a whole. This also meant implementing a more solid, reliable and faster network.

"The work we do demands a robust network," says Lawrence Defty. "A lot of our legacy equipment was out of warranty and we were running six servers for our software, email and document storage. We needed the support of a company that could deliver a solid operating platform for us and provide the kind of responsive support that our business demands."

"We also needed to introduce a new 3D CAD package and, at the same time, upgrade and support our SYSPRO ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system. We coordinate all the IT demands from our agricultural and airport services teams so the work load is immense,"adds Lawrence Defty.

The K3 team scoped out the entire hardware and software requirements needed to provide a robust, modern scalable solution. This was to ensure that thecomplex migration strategy of all the integrated Microsoft components was a success.

As one of the UK's leading Microsoft channel partners, K3 Managed Services are more than capable of providing such a highly technical service. Not only has it extensive experience in the implementation and ongoing support of critical ERP applications and works with many SYSPRO users in the UK, but the IT support division designs, implements, manages and supports a wide variety of on-site, hosted and cloud computing solutions to users in over 30 countries.

Fundamental to its service provision is an auditable service with advanced monitoring software, giving the ability to maximise the performance and functionality of the underlying IT infrastructure.

In wishing to get the most out of their system, RJ Herbert opted for 'Sentinel', K3's enterprise wide services support platform. This special solution gives proactive remote IT support provided by K3 Managed Services that maximises network availability. The highly advanced monitoring technology is operated from K3's Network Operations Centre in Manchester.

In addition, K3 Managed Services provided an optimised network design, replacing the six old servers with five efficient state of the art servers. A full suite of new software was also installed. This included: the latest Microsoft Windows operating systems, Microsoft Exchange Server for efficient email communications,SYSPRO ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), and Equator, K3's powerful human resource management system that integrates fully with SYSPRO.

As well as the main network infrastructure hardware and business software, K3 also provided new backup, remote access and network switch solutions to help RJ Herbert achieve its business ambitions with the least possible disruption.

"When it came to getting the new infrastructure up and running, it was imperative that we experienced the least possible disruption to our working process. K3 understood this and we only needed half a day's downtime for the entire week of migrating to the new solution.

"We view our IT network as mission critical to our business and we've been running on this platform for over a year now with no significant problems arising. The guys at K3 really know SYSPRO, so bringing them in to upgrade our system and smooth out other areas in our working process was the right decision. In addition, K3 brought all of this to us at a competitive price,"concludes Lawrence Defty.

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