Focusing on project delivery during Covid-19 with Viewpoint Housing Association
Paul Sutherland, Head of Infor Sales at Kick ICT, shares his case study on the joint project with Viewpoint Housing Association.
At Kick ICT, we have been delivering business solutions, network infrastructure and IT support to organisations for almost 40 years.
In recent weeks, we have been no different from any other organisation across the UK, having to adapt at a rapid pace to the mass transition to remote working.
We activated our business continuity plan in line with government lockdown measures as we sought to keep our colleagues and customers safe. As a cloud first, mobile business, we’re able to operate all our systems remotely which has been important as we look to ensure the continuity of services to our customers.
One example of delivering this continuity of service to customers is with SFHA member Viewpoint, a housing association and care home provider in Edinburgh, the Lothians and Fife. Viewpoint operates three care homes and over 1,400 housing properties and is a customer within our specialist housing division here at Kick, Castle Housing Solutions, where we look after the finance and ERP system requirements for 100+ housing sector organisations.
We agreed a project with Viewpoint to upgrade its existing finance applications from its current versions to the latest supported versions as well as introducing additional solution modules – all of which ensures it can deliver its financial and reporting needs in as effective a manner as possible.
In addition, we also agreed to move its finance solution and companion products into the Kick datacentre as part of this project.
The agreement to deliver the project was made during the first week of the government’s lockdown, and we were keen to ensure that these measures didn’t have any impact on our ability to deliver for Viewpoint.
We’re delighted to report that this project is progressing well and remains on time. Phase one was to build the required server environment in our datacentre, providing Viewpoint with a safe, secure and managed hosting solution. Phase two incorporated the deployment and onboarding of the system software into the datacentre. Crucially, this now gives secure remote access to its applications, a huge benefit in this uncertain time when physical office access is, and has potential to continue to be, interrupted.
Remote training and workshops are scheduled for May to July, and we’re looking forward to maintaining progress with the project team at Viewpoint across this time. We’ll be doing this with our established remote working tools that will enable us to keep communication lines open with messaging, video and phone calls used for the delivery of training, workshops and project management.
Paul Sutherland, Head of Infor Sales at Kick ICT, said: “We realised the importance of delivering our project with Viewpoint Housing Association within the committed timescales and were determined not to let Covid-19 have a detrimental impact here.
"Using our expertise within the housing sector, we were able to identify the right solution and combine this with our managed IT services expertise to deploy in our datacentre environment, ensuring Viewpoint staff can work safely and securely from any location.
Importantly, collaborating remotely hasn’t been an issue. Our internal team within the Castle Housing Division and the project team at Viewpoint have embraced the remote working tools to the degree that lockdown measures haven’t slowed us down at all."
Mike Gibson, Head of Finance at Viewpoint, said: “We’re delighted to have been able to make excellent progress in the upgrade our finance applications and to do so using modern, safe and secure hosting facilities.
"The Castle team within Kick have been in continual contact since the onset of Covid-19, and the lockdown measures, and we look forward to working with them remotely, or otherwise, in the weeks and months to come”.