GIRL GUIDING NEW ZEALAND
“The great thing about CodeBlue is the way they’ve taken the time to understand our organisation, to get to know us and what we really need. They’re coming on the journey with us”
Dawn McCormack, Girl Guiding New Zealand.
CodeBlue’s work with GirlGuiding New Zealand is all about using technology to accelerate change, in support of a strategy designed to manage change at the pace and tempo best suited to the organisation.
Technology, says GirlGuiding New Zealand Board member Lynley Lee, is now right at the heart of new strategies to ensure GirlGuiding is not only efficiently run, but is also tech savvy in using social media and other online resources to better engage with its Millennial and Post Millennial girl and young woman members.
Lynley Lee – who runs her own Nelson-based business technology consulting firm -was instrumental in engaging with CodeBlue in 2016 – first to stabilise the existing network, and then to work with GirlGuiding New Zealand on a staged technology improvement process into the future.
“We selected CodeBlue as our technology partner because we saw a great cultural fit, plus CodeBlue has the depth and breadth of services we need, as well as a national service and support capability,”
The first challenge for CodeBlue was to address urgent performance issues with GirlGuiding’s ageing infrastructure.
“We have a high level ‘going digital’ vision and a plan”, Lee says. “But the first practical step was to make the existing infrastructure stable and secure. Then to build a strong technology platform for the future. That future platform, she says, involves moving services to the cloud, implementing Office 365 improving internet access through a high speed fibre network, and upgrading workstations which included a rollout of new HP devices including the Elite x2. These fully-featured, enterprise-grade business devices are light and far more transportable than heavier, more cumbersome laptops, and will enable true work-from-anywhere, anytime.
“We needed to move immediately to ensure that what we are doing today is efficient and secure. That includes our membership system and cloud portal which gives our leaders access to their various programmes and also enables parents to log on and see their daughters’ progress.
“We also needed a robust platform and infrastructure to support new digital initiatives, including social media, in ways that are secure and, if done right, will be transformational in terms of engagement with our existing members as well as stimulating new membership,” Lee says.
Stabilizing the existing network was not a trivial task. In the wake of the Christchurch earthquake GirlGuiding New Zealand National Office had moved to temporary premises, with insecure and slow internet connections to branch offices. Working closely with GirlGuiding New Zealand’s Technology Development Group, the CodeBlue team stabilised ageing servers and implemented backup and security.
Following the move to new premises this year work in now underway to migrate services to the cloud. Significant monthly savings have been achieved by replacing the aging WAN with VPN connectivity between national and regional offices. Better access and data security has been achieved via Fortinet fire walls with advanced content inspection, along with high frequency server back up support.
Dawn McCormack says the quality of CodeBlue’s support has been demonstrated on a number of occasions.
“Soon after CodeBlue started work on stabilising our old system, the fire in the Port Hills broke out and we had to evacuate our temporary premises. The CodeBlue team was right there for us during the evacuation locking down and backing up our servers. And they were superb helping ensure our move to new premises was done without disruption.