Working through busy days, it’s sometimes all too easy to lose sight of some of the interesting things we’ve achieved on behalf of our customers. These are the snippets that might not make the news - or the spotlight of press releases - but achievements nonetheless that we think you’ll like to hear about. They evidence our resolve to go the extra mile for our customers and are reflected in the appreciated testimonials shown in this section.
There’s a story behind each of the features in this section. In some cases they reflect long hours worked across our operation; in others it’s about a gritty determination to align and expedite carriers, vendors or 3rd parties; in others it’s about innovating to overcome customer challenges. Collectively they reflect our endeavour to ensure our customers’ success by focusing on doing the right thing… and by always doing our best.
"Since we’ve had a managed network, we feel that we’ve got better performance and increased levels of resilience... and we think that’s mainly because of the monitoring we get from the SAS NOC. Having a managed network doesn’t mean you’re blind to everything. In fact with SAS we’re still able to monitor the network ourselves and we get to discuss any issues and see the stats whenever we want".
Stephen Coleman: IT Director
"SAS designed and deployed a resilient BT IP Clear MPLS WAN to BNPPRE’s 11 UK offices and now provides 24/7 support and monitoring for our WAN, Voice estate and Cisco LAN technologies. We’ve always had a fully managed network, but the service level we get from SAS is significantly higher and more hands-on. Having proactive monitoring has really made a difference because it gives us a head start on resolving issues and we can also see exactly where the 'pinch points' are on the network".
Peter Watts: IT Director
"Our network technology had reached the limit of what it could do. We were also about to implement a new 3D modelling package so we needed to upgrade. Once you’re outside London, the only real provider is BT but we had some concerns about working with BT because of our size. BT suggested partnering with SAS to implement the new network and we’ve found that having someone like SAS to provide the interface with BT makes sense. Effectively the concept works better than having a direct relationship with BT. There’s a lot of work involved in getting two new fibre networks installed with diverse routing and getting everything tested and ready to go, but SAS has done all the leg work to get us a network that’s working".
John Lane: IT Director
"I first engaged with SAS Managed Applications in April 2011, when we jointly embarked on a special project to develop a state-of-the-art tracking, traceability and quality audit system to be used throughout the healthcare sector. We quickly developed an excellent working relationship with their management & development team - and have been consistently impressed by the high level of technical expertise and knowledge demonstrated by their organisation. SAS was initially recommended to me by a personal friend, and having now worked with SAS for more than 4 years I can fully understand the reasons why their customers feel such strong advocacy.
We have found SAS excellent to work with. They have a proven track record in software development, particularly in our sector, and we trust them to always provide us best advice and guidance. An approachable and personable operation, they have demonstrated both patience and focus in helping us get to where we are today - one of the UK’s leading heath solution providers. I see our working relationship with SAS as a real team effort in which both parties (us and SAS) have properly embraced the spirit of partnership… and it has worked. I would have no reservations recommending SAS to any organisation in need of software development services".
Toni Hoare: Managing Director
"We needed someone who could maintain our infrastructure and act as a single point of contact for anything related to BT because we don’t have the time to do it ourselves. What impressed us about SAS was that its expertise didn’t 'begin and end with' the WAN. I could see that SAS understood how the entire network infrastructure worked and could help us get to where we wanted to be. The main benefit of working with SAS is that we don’t have to manage the BT relationship anymore. This has freed up quite a bit of internal resource for other projects and one of these is how we can improve our network set-up for our applications, so we’re already talking to SAS again".
Altaf Karim: IT Manager
"What I like about SAS is there’s a lot of flexibility in their approach to solving maintenance problems. Working with a small team like SAS is a plus point as quite quickly they know our setup. When I call SAS, the person I’m dealing with is likely to be the person who deals with the problem directly. As a small company, we wouldn’t have the direct feed that SAS has into BT. SAS has the authority to raise incidents and talk directly to BT engineers. That means we get a faster resolution to any network issues we have, which in turn allows us to deliver a better service to our customers".
David Kelly: IT Director
"BT suggested an introduction to SAS to help with the design, installation and support of our new network. I was sceptical at first but once I’d met SAS, I felt reassured. SAS had all the answers I wanted and hearing the BT engineers say that SAS was superb was really enough. SAS is now monitoring our lines 24/7, so if one of our sites goes down at the weekend I’ll get a phone call and I can take immediate action to correct it".
Mark Stone: Group IT Manager
"Working with SAS allows us to have the UK & International Networks we want without having to deal with the day-to-day management of our carrier. Whether we’re placing an order for a new line, installing new circuits or having a router configured, SAS project manages the entire process quickly and seamlessly, and so far, without problems".
Dave Magee: Operations Manager
"We look to BT as our preferred partner for the delivery of circuits but we also wanted someone to help with the management wrap around the technical delivery of the service. Within that service we wanted a total end-to-end support function – total project management and provisioning for engineering visits, circuit delivery and managing the contact with each site, so our IT only needs to be involved with escalations. BT recommended SAS and we’ve had no complaints. Our priority is service levels, then cost. We did speak to SAS customers who instilled us with confidence that SAS was the Partner of Choice".
Derek Brooks: Head of IT
"SAS recently installed a new server infrastructure for Sovereign. We did have a few hiccups on the project but this wasn’t SAS’s fault. The SAS support team is always helpful – they’ve even helped out on stuff that’s not technically on their job list – and they’re always contactable".
Paul Jacques: General Manager
"SAS did the lion’s share of the work on the network upgrade, making sure the links went in at the right time and were correctly configured. They also assisted us with our redundancy and resilience options around routing and got involved in the day-to-day management of BT to ensure each milestone was met. From a cost perspective, although our new network is marginally more expensive than the last, we have significantly upped the bandwidth on the links to branches – going from 256kb to 2MB links. That cost also includes the managed services and monitoring we get from SAS, so overall we’ve got a much better service for our money".
Giles Kirkham: IT Manager
"Our previous network supplier was managing the estate. It should have been a fully managed service but the break/fix element was contracted out to a third party and it just started falling apart. That experience made us worried about working with SAS at first... but that was put to bed by their response to the RFP. The SAS wrap wasn’t necessarily cheaper than what we had before, but it was better value for money and more ‘fit for purpose’. It also has better capability and fits more closely with our strategic vision for what we want to do".
Owen Rawlinson: IT Infrastructure Manager
"This project was about looking at costs and doing more with the network. By choosing EFM, we were able to reduce costs at some sites and utilise the saving to connect other sites to the WAN. We also now have the extra capacity we need along with a far more resilient network. I looked at other vendors for this project but we have a proven track record with SAS and I have no issues with the BT network because it reaches most parts of the UK. When it comes to the network, which is critical to the company, I'd much rather have an expert managing that for me... and that's what I get with SAS".
Gary Cleasby: IT Infrastructure Manager
"With SAS you always get through to people who have the knowledge to help you and they’re always able to get to the bottom of the problem, even on issues that other organisations have struggled with. We’ve seen some real improvements in service levels, particularly on the time it takes to find & fix faults. In the beginning, SAS wasn’t a critical part of the service we provide but that has changed. Now, I wouldn’t want to work with BT without having a service like the one SAS offers – it has more than proved its value".
Laurence Arteton: Infrastructure & Telecoms Manager
"SAS provides managed communications services to Vanquis Bank, including proactive monitoring of our core WAN infrastructure. However, when we first started working with SAS, we did have some concerns about the quality of its technical team but as soon as we raised these with the company, it took immediate steps to address the situation and this has led to a vastly superior service from the SAS NOC".
Neil Smith: Head of IT
"One of the biggest benefits we’ve seen from our relationship with SAS is that we don’t have to manage BT anymore. If I ring SAS, SAS will own the issue and manage it for us. That reduces the overhead on my team and means we can now concentrate on managing applications. SAS is a trusted partner so whatever we do in the future, SAS will always be involved in the ‘plumbing’ for any project route".
Rob Simpson: Head of IT
"We were having real difficulty getting sufficient bandwidth to a hard-to-reach office where the limited connectivity, and low circuit speeds, meant our staff were unable to work effectively. The high cost, and length of time, to deliver fibre meant that option was not commercially viable and we were really stuck for ideas.
We approached SAS and they came up with an innovative approach. They suggested bonding three of our DSL lines into a single router to boost performance and then link that back into our BT/SAS managed MPLS network. The solution worked well. It has delivered far greater bandwidth than we could have ever imagined. Best of all, our ability to work better and collaborate effectively is now notably improved.
The solution performs well, was brilliantly simple and we are ‘stoked’ at the pure ease of delivering this with SAS’s help. We are so impressed, that we have started deploying the solution to other sites for back up and /or resilience purposes. We will be using SAS’s Rapid Site Deployment (RSD) capabilities as we start deploying connectivity to our newly acquired Parsons Brinkerhoff offices".
Ian Shearer: IT Director
Having acquired a number of new offices, Andrew Page requested our help to connect them to their corporate WAN as quickly as possible to minimise lost trading. After reviewing the options, we agreed to deploy our Bonded 3G/4G service as the quickest and most cost effective solution. We installed the hub router in Andrew Page’s Data Centre within 60 hours. We then connected 13 offices to their WAN within 18 hours of that hub being made operational.
SAS upgraded the entire WiFi access point estate at a major military Naval Base, one of the largest WiFi installations in the UK. This involved more than 600 access points and 40+ Cisco switches. It took approximately 10 weeks to complete and added to SAS’s running total of having installed more than 17,000 access points nationally.
Sitel, a global outsourcing provider, had a site in Germany which had limited connectivity. Planned work to upgrade this via fixed line services was going to take 90 days, but the client required the site to be operational in 10 days. To ensure Sitel achieved its deadline, SAS installed a Bonded 3G/4G router within 5 days only - a full 85 days less than the original forecast for the fixed line service.
WSP, one of the world’s leading engineering professional services firms, needed to connect a new London office to its corporate network as quickly as possible. They had been quoted 90 days for Ethernet circuits. SAS suggested linking the new office to an existing ‘on-net' office by Laser Line-of-Sight. First call to completed installation took less than 10 days. The engineering work to establish the 1 Gigabit link took only 48 hours to complete.
KCA Deutag is an international oil and gas services company with headquarters in the UK. The company was relocating their London office and SAS was asked to install a 100Mb IP Global Fibre Circuit within 3 weeks. In normal circumstances, due to this being a global network it could take 2 months. SAS liaised directly with Openreach and collectively managed to expedite the build, fibre jointing, exchange work and fit & test. Working out-of-hours and during weekends, SAS made the service live by 11.00 am on the target date, a full 5 weeks ahead of the normal 2 months lead time.
HE Simm is one of the UK’s leading providers of building services. They contracted SAS to cable the new 24-floor flagship Arora hotel at the O2 arena. This included 936 rooms, 112 km of Cat 6 cable and up to 15 engineers a day. SAS subsequently went onto cable other parts of the hotel, including the main ballroom.