Case Study

Shifting Insurance To The Cloud

Overview

WPS Insurance Brokers & Risk Services offers a wide range of commercial insurance products and risk management services. As an SME company, WPS does not have its own dedicated IT resource, and ITEC has delivered a range of IT services to the company since 2007. This includes the complete migration of WPS office systems and applications to the cloud as well as, more recently, the implementation of a new telephony system.


The Customer

WPS is an independent Chartered insurance broker employing approximately
40 staff within their Plymouth office, providing insurance & risk management solutions to a nationwide client base.

 

The Challenge

As a business, WPS is heavily reliant on IT – including instant access to client information. The business thrives on strong customer relationships, and WPS is proud of its client retention & long standing relationships. That puts a premium on compliance, reliability and easy access to the right data.

The IT systems were once internally based with servers and local connectivity inside the office. In time and as the company grew, this internal approach began to bring challenges with it. Over the years due to company mergers and growth, WPS had built up what IT and HR Manager Anita Riddell describes as a “mish-mash of different systems.”

Anita explains: “We were at something of an IT crossroads with inconsistent software applications being used across the company, and this was leading to reliability problems. We were patching over the cracks. Different hardware models and versions of Windows sometimes made it difficult to pinpoint issues and solve them quickly.”

The company debated long and hard the relative merits of upgrading their internal IT or migrating to the cloud and – in close cooperation with ITEC – decided that the cloud represented the right way forward. WPS Insurance took the decision to re-locate their technology infrastructure to the cloud inside the ITEC Data Centre.

 

The Solution

The migration to the cloud has removed the headache of ongoing hardware costs. Ageing PCs have been replaced by Wyse terminals running Citrix software that enables access to the standard WPS corporate desktop and all related applications.

Staff working remotely (typically the company’s management & the sales team) can access exactly the same secure desktop environment. They can easily locate the relevant client information, documents and templates, allowing greater flexibility (for the Company & its employees)

The cloud has improved stability and provided WPS with a consistent platform that is much easier to manage and maintain. Software updates are now streamlined with a regular planned maintenance schedule.

Security and resilience have also been enhanced. WPS subscribes to ITEC’s business continuity service, which is equipped to restore a company to ‘business as usual’ within 15 minutes in the event of systems failure. Several major power failures have meant WPS has made use of this facility.

Since moving to the cloud, WPS has been through another milestone IT change – switching their core broking application to the Acturis SaaS (Software as a Service) platform. This was a collaborative change involving ITEC, Acturis and WPS to ensure that system configuration met requirements and could be rolled out with minimal impact to the business.

More recently, WPS has asked ITEC to update their Voice over IP based telephony systems, which went live in July 2017. WPS has also committed to a 5-year agreement with ITEC for the continued supply of IT services.

Smarter Working

ITEC talk to us in business language rather than techie jargon. Enabling us to concentrate on our day to day of business of looking after our clients without worrying about IT and questions like: is our antivirus up to date?

Agility

Things in IT don’t always run smoothly, so it’s important for us to have a locally based supplier that has built up knowledge of our requirements and quickly sorts out issues.