SparkNet’s local operations consist of approximately 6 staff members with the remaining workforce distributed across the US and in Eastern Canada. Efficient communication and collaboration has always been a challenge due to a distributed workforce. Like many small businesses, there have historically been reliability issues with the building where SparkNet’s IT infrastructure resides. SparkNet needed a solution which would not only improve collaboration, but also ensure systems were available 24/7.
At Fully Managed® we have embraced the power of cloud computing and see this as a strategic opportunity for many small business customers. SparkNet Communications was a prime candidate for the cloud computing model based on their overall business needs.
The solution involved the Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS) provided by Microsoft Online Services, a hosted file-server in our Kelowna, BC-based secure data center, seamless remote access through Juniper SSL-VPN technologies, and a hosted fax service.
“We move quickly and needed an technology infrastructure which was able to keep up with our business. Thanks to Fully Managed® and the Microsoft Cloud, we no longer have to physically rely on our office space for reliable collaboration between our distributed team members. When we recently experienced an internet outage in our corporate headquarters, our entire team was still connected remotely thanks to our entire IT infrastructure being in the cloud.
Director of Operations
Once migrated to the cloud, SparkNet was immediately able to take advantage of several new capabilities:
Through Microsoft Office Communicator, SparkNet staff can now communicate in real-time through a secure corporate instant messaging platform. This eliminated the need to send countless e-mails back and forth which in the past, would impact productivity and also clutter inboxes.
Collaborating on documents and projects was always difficult in the past due to a geographically distributed workforce. However, now with Microsoft SharePoint which is included in the BPOS package, SparkNet has launched a company Intranet which serves as a collaboration portal for employees.
Cumbersome remote access technologies were used in the past and have since been replaced with a seamless solution through Juniper. A browser-based SSL-VPN is now used for secure remote access to corporate files and information which replaces a poor performing client-based VPN solution.
Power outages, cooling issues, internet downtime; these are now things of the past! Now that all centralized services have been moved to the cloud, SparkNet can reap the rewards of guaranteed uptime and availability. This is one of the major benefits of cloud computing and it saved SparkNet a significant capital investment as they did not need to upgrade their physical infrastructure.
Based in Vancouver, BC Canada, SparkNet Communications is an international consultancy that specializes in licensing, programming and marketing for radio. They are the owners of the JACK FM ® radio brand in the US and internationally, working closely with licensees to grow, develop and maintain the integrity of the brand.
Official Site: www.jack.fm