Price Waterhouse Coopers
PwC firms worldwide provide industry-focused assurance, tax, and advisory services to enhance value for their clients. More than 163,000 people in 151 countries in firms across the PwC network share their thinking, experience, and solutions to develop fresh perspectives and practical advice.
PwC South Africa is just one of the many PwC firms operating throughout the world. It has approximately 5,500 system users based across 7 countries throughout Southern Africa.
Replication and Remote Access are Vital
PwC South Africa uses Lotus Notes and Domino to facilitate communications and provide essential business applications. In total, there are 47 Domino servers, with 2,500 users based at the Johannesburg office, and a further 3,000 users based at 20 remote offices. Due to the nature of PwC’s work, consultants spend most of their time working on-site with their clients, rather than at their base office. Remote access to the Lotus Notes and Domino infrastructure provides a vital line of communication with the base office, which is critical for business success. Prompt, reliable access to up-to-date information, via email and applications, is essential to the way PwC consultants work. It is also vital that consultants can collaborate, and share information quickly, in order to meet their deadlines, and provide the high standard of service expected by clients.
The Key Challenges for IT Support
One of the key challenges for the support team is ensuring that data is replicated to remote sites in a timely manner to facilitate the business. If replication fails, or exceeds agreed timescales, consultants cannot access the latest information when they need it, and the quality of service provided to clients is compromised. Consequently, it is vital that the service is proactively managed to ensure that applications and key business databases are available, and that replication occurs within agreed time limits. Another key challenge for the support team is to ensure that consultants can access their email and applications while working away from their base office. Reliable remote access to the Lotus Notes and Domino based systems is vital for consultants to maintain contact with their clients and colleagues, and to work on audits, proposals, or tax consulting. Internally, PwC South Africa has high expectations for up-time and availability. The potential monetary impact of an outage is of the order of tens of thousands of euros per hour of system downtime. Therefore the PwC support team strive to safeguard the high quality of service delivery by monitoring services proactively, while at the same time identifying opportunities to reduce overheads and gain efficiencies wherever possible.
Assuring the Delivery of Critical Services
The PwC support team use GSX Monitor to ensure replication of their critical databases. By automating the monitoring of replication and database response times, the team can be confident that the information required by the business, is delivered to and available for the business in the critical time frame. The team can also be confident that they can support consultants working remotely on client sites by providing reliable access to email and applications. By using GSX Monitor to automate monitoring and reporting tasks, the team have improved their efficiency and succeeded in reducing overheads.
PwC South Africa consists of a team of highly skilled professionals focused on identifying ways of delivering value for clients; the same skills are applied internally when planning how to get the most out of their communications infrastructure. GSX Monitor was assessed against other products and identified as the most suitable solution to ensure that critical services such as mail delivery, application availability, and replication consistently meet the high expectations for service delivery.
“We have reviewed other products but many were overly complex, very expensive with high management and resource requirements. GSX is easy to configure, cost effective, and scalable. GSX is focused on the Domino environment and they KNOW Domino. With targeted alerts and reports they rapidly get to the heart of the problem and save administrators hours of trial and error trying to configure and consolidate hundreds of statistics.” -David Preston- PwC Southern African Notes Manager