A key manufacturing solution provider for the UK and European aerospace, defence, medical, automotive, oil and gas industries, Nu-Pro Ltd predominantly produces finished products and parts for commercial and non-commercial aircraft. With over 150 employees across the group, print was becoming a drain on resources, and the IT department was understaffed and unable to deal with the mounting number of internal IT issues. Sharp were brought in to manage Nu-Pro’s print and IT infrastructure, relieving the time of staff to be able to perform their own duties.
No time to perform mission-critical updates
Firstly, staff at Nu-Pro were finding that their print devices were becoming increasingly problematic. Aaron Young, Group IT Manager at Nu-Pro says: “For us it’s about service and added value. Our printers were breaking down regularly and our managed print company were very slow to respond, we were just getting nothing for the amount we were paying.”
Secondly, the main issue for Nu-Pro was around IT. Aaron adds: “At Nu-Pro unprecedented growth led a rise in staff numbers, which also meant a rise in everyday IT issues. Unfortunately, we had limited internal resource to be able to keep on top of those issues, but they kept coming in!”
Aaron continues: “At the time we were really understaffed in the IT department as the then IT Manager left the business, so I was looking for a service I could rely on for that technical expertise and guidance that went with my manager.”
Lastly, “We had no time to perform mission-critical updates or security patches on our servers and devices” says Aaron. “We had massive issues where the servers were crashing because they didn’t have the right updates, disks were failing and we weren’t finding out about them until they’d failed, staff computers were also running old software and had outdated security. It was a lot of major issues that we weren’t picking up early enough.”
Aaron continues: “If we wanted to run any maintenance on our servers we had to do it disruptively during the day, which made staff unproductive because their connections to our servers were interrupted. There were also so many back-dated updates because we didn’t have the tools we needed to be able to carry out proper maintenance, everything was mounting on my department.”
Sharp managed services
Sharp’s first solution was to remove dated print equipment and enrol Nu-Pro onto its Managed Print Service (MPS). By replacing inefficient technology with the latest multifunction devices Sharp aimed to reduce downtime and enable staff to be more productive. Aiding this further, preventative maintenance measures built into Sharp’s MPS proactively stop breakdowns, again reducing downtime. In the unlikely event that a machine did breakdown, then Sharp’s fleet of over 200 nationwide engineers, with a targeted response time of under 4-hours, would be on-hand to help.
The second and largest part of Sharp’s solution was to roll out its Managed IT Service. After a thorough audit of Nu-Pro’s environment, Sharp’s proposition was to lay the foundations for a future proof, resilient infrastructure by ensuring all devices and hardware were up-to-date with the latest patches and protections.
Additionally, Sharp would provide IT expertise and consultancy services where required. A dedicated Account Manager would be available to give Aaron advice or a second opinion to make sure he was following best practice. Whitelisted patches would also be implemented, meaning before a patch went live, it would pass through the Sharp team first to make sure it wasn’t destructive.
Finally, Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) was rolled out for Nu-Pro’s servers and devices. With a team of over 700 staff constantly monitoring for 2500 common faults, the Sharp team would pick up issues before they happened. Updates would also be automated for out-of-hours, causing no disruption and freeing Aaron’s time for internal faults.
A resilient, future-proof infrastructure
Since adopting Sharp’s Managed Print Service Nu-Pro continue to see savings. Aaron says: “Comparatively Sharp are far cheaper than our previous provider and the service has been phenomenal. Print is something you never hear about, which to me signifies a successful service that’s doing its job!”
When talking about Sharp’s Managed IT Service, Aaron says: “Sharp have massively freed my time and the time of our team. We’re no longer being stretched too thin, now we have much more time to focus on user specific issues and keeping staff operational and productive, instead of managing and maintaining the servers and infrastructure.”
Aaron continues: “Having Sharp there as a readily available external resource has been invaluable. For example, if we are working on a project, I can give them a call and they provide us with advice and consultancy. They advise us on the best route for getting the job done, they’re there for us to turn to if we need them which just gives us so much peace of mind. Lots of the issues we were having we’re now able to avoid, its great knowing they’re watching over our vital infrastructure.
Finally, since entrusting Sharp with all server maintenance, Aaron says: “Sharp have increased our server uptime by 35% - 40% which is unbelievable. They remotely maintain, manage, and constantly monitor them. We also have a desktop computer care package which includes updates, antivirus software and security patches on everyone’s computers, again an invaluable service. Sharp have also set up an automated monitoring system that alerts us when something’s going to go wrong. This then gives us time to plan ahead and fight the fire before it happens.”
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