The Richard Farleigh Group, whose namesake and founder was a dragon in the TV series Dragon’s Den, provides business investment services, assessing and making investments in products and companies. The Richard Farleigh Group utilises Microsoft Cloud services with Office 365 to improve collaboration and enhance business processes for business investment decisions.
The Richard Farleigh Group, headquartered in the UK, provides business investment services, such as capital investment and business advice to both new / start-up and existing companies.
The Richard Farleigh Group has a team of business investment and finance specialists that need to effectively communicate and collaborate on a wide range of factors relating to business investment analysis and appraisal. The investments can range from thousands to millions of pounds and the information and data needs to be stored and communicated with a high level of security and availability/reliability.
The work requires continuous collaboration and communication between consultants, management and back-office staff.
It is essential that all employees – office-based or mobile – have easy to use, secure and reliable access to emails, shared calendars and documents.
prior it business solution
Team members comprising permanent employees and associates utilised a variety of hosted email solutions. Most users utilise Apple Macs with a variety of email clients including Entourage, iMail, etc.
This made it difficult or impossible for some users to view and share calendar information on a company-wide basis.
There was no formal and centralised storage of files and documents.
Laptops and PCs with a mixture of XP/Vista/Windows 7 and Office 2003/2007/2010. The office IT infrastructure comprised of a wireless network with company data stored on a NAS. When out of the office, employees stored data on their laptops, synchronising and copying it to the NAS when in the office.
Major problems included the difficulty of collaborating and communicating due to the lack of easy access to company data, especially when out of the office; and the lack of shared calendaring from the basic email solution in use.
In summary business terms, the prior IT business solution negatively impacted on productivity and operating efficiency, and the lack of formal SLAs for data backups, lack of DR (Disaster Recovery) was a major concern for the company’s directors.
The Richard Farleigh Group, after a review of Cloud Computing vendors and their service offerings, identified Microsoft Office 365 as providing the solution assessed in terms of cost, high levels of security, enterprise levels of functionality and reliability.
To assist in the design and implementation of the Cloud solution, Pygmalion, a Microsoft Partner with Gold and Silver competencies was contracted to provide the following services:
- Design and implement a portal/Extranet based on SharePoint Online to provide collaboration and document management.
- Configuration of Apple Macs to access Office 365.
- Migration of emails to Exchange Online.
- Configuration of Blackberry smartphones for mobile access to emails and calendars.
- Provide service desk and support for complete IT and communications infrastructure.
- Increases in productivity and operating efficiency due to improved collaboration and ease of anytime, anywhere access to emails, calendars and company data.
- All major IT services provided from the Cloud at a fixed monthly subscription fee giving precisely predictable IT costs.
- All major and critical IT services provided with an enterprise level SLA of 99.9 %.
"The move to Office 365 has provided a collaboration and communications solution that was quick to implement, with a low monthly cost, and easy to use by users that are mostly Apple Mac based." – Richard Farleigh, Business Investment Angel