Bringing Foster Care to the Cloud – Nexus Fostering

Nexus Fostering

As well as our many corporate clients, Cloudserve is also committed to serving good causes, which is why when Nexus Fostering approached us about updating, supporting and future-proofing their legacy IT infrastructure, we jumped at the challenge.

Nexus Fostering is an Ofsted rated ‘Outstanding’ fostering agency providing foster services across the UK from 8 office locations. They place children in need with foster families and parents and change their lives for the better.

The Challenge:

1: Limited access to centralised data.

2: Basic Email Systems with poor support from existing provider

3: Increasing management overhead for IT support and maintenance

4: The need to support mobile and flexible working patterns

5: Manual and time intensive data backup procedures

6: Key IT resource leaving to focus on other areas.

7: Older PC Estate in terms of Operating systems (XP) and Microsoft Office Version

 

Nexus Fostering’s CEO, Grace Wyatt, saw the potential benefits that “Cloud” services could bring to Nexus and approached Cloudserve following a recommended by the CEO of a similar business, Blue Sky Fostering, with whom Grace had close links.

Cloudserve had undertaken a “Cloud Implementation” project for Blue Sky Fostering two years earlier whom had been sufficiently impressed with the initial migration project, the performance and functionality of their new solution, and the quality on the on-going support to recommend Cloudserve.

Cloudserve worked closely with the Nexus management team to assess the limitations of the existing solution and detail the current and future IT requirements of the organisation.  Certain Key criteria were noted with regards to the functionality required of a new solution and the capabilities required from a new supplier.

1: Centralised Access to business data from any location

2: Common interface, MS Office version, performance for all Staff

3: Mobile device based access and ability to access from any location

4: Automated backup and Data security

5: Flexible Email environment

6: Minimised need for on premise equipment and ability to utilise current PC Estate

7: Established, proven and responsive supplier

 

Cloudserve presented two “Cloud” based options to Nexus whom decided to utilise Cloudserve “Hosted Desktop Solution” in combination with “Microsoft Office 365” for email and collaboration.

The Hosted Desktop solution minimised the need for new equipment purchases and utilised the existing PC Estate as access devices. All data business is however now stored in Cloudserve’s secure Data centres and not on any on premise equipment.

Cloudserve’s Hosted Desktop solution has provided all Nexus Staff with a personal Remote Desktop accessed from their existing legacy Office PC device but also the flexibility to use any internet connected device to support flexible and home working.

The Office 365 suite was provided to all staff via the Remote Desktops, providing a common MS Office experience for all staff.  A centralised “Shared” data location is available from all Hosted Desktop with permissions set appropriately to limit staff access to data where needed.

Microsoft Office 365 provides the core capability for Nexus Fostering’s Email requirements with access enabled from Outlook running on the Hosted Desktops, Outlook Web Access from any Browser and full Sync to Smartphones.

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