1 LHRIC Network Support - Additional Service Features It is important to note that costs associated with LHRIC Network Support service not only cover an on-site support engineer but also include a number of additional tools and services that are required to deliver a timely and effective support presence. These tools and services are one of the many ways we differentiate our service from our competition and it is important to understand that these items are included in the upfront cost of the service. These tools and services are shared by all districts in the consortium, which provides the opportunity to provide these items in a much more cost effective manner. Following is a list of those tools and services: Senior Network Consultant \ Engineer The LHRIC provides a high level regional support consultant \ supervisor (regional senior) that coordinates additional technical resources, provides guidance and direction to all technology support staff members and assists with staff management. Regional seniors also provide consulting services to the district such as assisting in analyzing district technology needs, future technology design and planning, and management of escalated technical issues. 24 x 7 Monitoring and Alerting The LHRIC provides all districts with an enterprise 24x7 monitoring and alerting solution that monitors critical infrastructure and network devices and proactively sends out alerts in the event of a failure or prior to a failure. These alerts assist in reducing downtime and in some cases avoiding outages for supported districts. This also eliminates the need for districts to invest in additional hardware and software to maintain a local solution. Automated \ Centralized Desktop Operating System Patch Management The LHRIC provides an automated, centralized, desktop operating system, patch management solution for all networked workstations. This provides a much more secure and stable desktop environment for our supported districts, while keeping this type of traffic from consuming the district s Internet bandwidth and eliminating the need for districts to invest in additional hardware and software to maintain a local solution.
2 Centralized Automated Antivirus Umbrella The LHRIC networking service delivers a centralized, automated, Symantec Antivirus enterprise umbrella for the delivery of antivirus software updates to all workstations throughout the consortium. This minimizes the need for districts to utilize Internet bandwidth to obtain updates to local clients and ensure that client workstations are secured with up-todate signature and definition files. This feature also provides a central management point for client workstations that is proactively monitored by LHRIC staff for excessive virus activity and eliminates the need for supported districts to invest in additional hardware and software to maintain a local solution. Centralized Automated Workstation Inventory Solution The LHRIC provides districts with an automated desktop inventory solution, which inventories all workstations on district local area networks. This allows our districts to obtain a detailed inventory of all network workstations and local software utilized within the district and assists districts in planning and in decision making eliminating the need for supported districts to purchase additional hardware and software to maintain a local solution. Automated Daily Backups of Infrastructure Equipment Configurations The LHRIC provides all supported districts with an automated infrastructure backup solution. On a daily basis, local configuration files for all Cisco infrastructure equipment are backed up. In the event of equipment failure, upon replacement of the failed device, configuration files are remotely restored to avoid any unnecessary or extensive downtime. This also eliminates the need for supported districts to purchase any additional hardware and software to maintain a local solution. Second Level Vendor Support and Paid Support Incidents The LHRIC currently maintains support contracts with various vendors such as: Apple, Cisco, Citrix, Dell, Microsoft, Novell, and Symantec. This provides all district support staff the ability to obtain 2 nd level support assistance in resolving complex issues. Training Training is an essential component for all technicians within the technical arena. The LHRIC offers in-house and third party partner training for all LHRIC and district support staff, to ensure that adequate levels of expertise are maintained. This feature ensures that all participating districts will receive superior levels of support and expertise in supporting district networks. The LHRIC also provides all LHRIC Technology Support Staff access to web based e-learning accounts for additional professional development and reference.
3 Helpdesk As part of the Technology Support Service, all participating districts utilize a centralized Helpdesk solution, which gives all districts the ability to monitor the work being requested and run customized reports to analyze service delivery levels. Helpdesk Support Staff As a member of the Technology Support Service, all districts have the ability to contact our Helpdesk support staff (via or telephone) to assist in facilitating resolution of technology support issues. Periodically, our Remote Support staff may be engaged to provide real time resolution of issues from the LHRIC providing additional support beyond on site support staff. This results in much more timely and effective response to district issues and support needs. Insurance The LHRIC carries replacement insurance on all equipment it purchases on behalf of a district with an initial value of over $500. This allows the district to be provided with replacement equipment in the event that hardware is stolen or damaged. Research and Development Based on the needs of all participating consortium districts, the Technology Support Service continually researches new solutions. In addition, support staff will also test updates, patches and new versions of current products before deploying to live environments, to ensure seamless integration into existing district networks. Overtime In some cases, districts may require support work that may need to be performed after hours or on weekends. In these instances, the LHRIC can work with supported districts to arrange for support work to be performed after normal business hours, to avoid districts experiencing any unnecessary down time or to catch up on workload. Cellular Communication All engineers will be provided a cellular phone to assist in day-to-day support operations being performed in a district. Key district contacts will be supplied with the LHRIC technician s cellular number for emergency contact when needed.
4 LHRIC Technology Support Service - Value Added Benefits Participation in the Lower Hudson Regional Information Center (LHRIC) Technology Support Service includes various additional value added benefits that much of our competition cannot offer. The LHRIC is a non-profit consortium established to provide cost effective technology services and solutions to 62 school districts in Westchester, Putnam, and Rockland counties. Our Technology Support Service has over 100 information technology professionals that comprise a shared technology support service among all participating component districts. The LHRIC Technology Support Service maintains a number of Novell certified (CNE), Microsoft certified (MCSE) and Cisco certified (CCNA) engineers specializing in various networking technologies. Districts participating in our service have the opportunity to take advantage of our broad level of experience in supporting and maintaining educational networks. The additional value added benefits are as follows: Specialization in Education The LHRIC specializes in the support of technology in the public education sector only and has been providing support of technology in the K-12 educational arena for over 25 years. This has provided an in depth understanding of the needs and requirements in the support of educational networks, which vastly differs from the support of non-educational networks. Aid on Hardware and Software Purchases Along with participation in Model Schools, participation in the LHRIC technology support service qualifies component districts for BOCES aid on the purchase of instructional hardware and software. Procurement and Financing of Hardware and Software Participation in the LHRIC Technology Support Service allows the LHRIC to procure software and hardware on behalf of districts. In addition, participating districts will be provided the option to engage in IPA s (Installment Purchase Agreements), which provide low interest financing options for the mass purchase of hardware and software. Hardware Warranty Management On behalf of participating districts, the LHRIC will maintain an updated inventory of Dell, IBM, and Cisco hardware and perform end of life management for this equipment. Annually the LHRIC will provide districts with projected maintenance costs on this critical network hardware to assist in ensuring improved availability and reliability of critical network devices. This will also ensure that districts are aware when equipment will become end of life and no longer be supported by the vendor.
5 Software Maintenance and Renewals On behalf of participating districts, the LHRIC will maintain annual software renewals and provide districts with projected maintenance costs on various key software products districts utilize to provide them with continuous upgrade protection and vendor support. Software vendors include but are not limited to: Citrix, Microsoft, Novell, VMWare, Symantec, and Veritas. Additional Resources Due to the size of our support operation and that we offer a shared service, it provides the unique opportunity to provide support and\or assistance to districts by dispatching engineers from neighboring districts or other departments, to assist in resolving escalated or advanced technical issues. Knowledge Depth and Expertise Since we have over 100 technology support staff members it provides the opportunity to collaborate and tap into a vast pool of knowledge and expertise to address more complex technical issues. The technology support service also maintains staff members that are specialists in key networking areas. This results in a much more timely response and resolution to technical issues for participating districts. Spare Parts and Equipment The LHRIC maintains a stock of end of life equipment of Dell servers and Cisco switches, which in the event of a failure provides the ability to replace the equipment for a district at no additional cost. This helps prevent the district from experiencing any unnecessary downtime or additional expenses to repair the equipment and provides insurance to districts that choose to continue using equipment past the warranty period. Negotiated Pricing One of the benefits of participating in a consortium is that it provides the opportunity to take advantage of the economies of scale and leverage pricing. The LHRIC has used this leverage to negotiate special pricing with various software and hardware vendors. All districts participating in the technology support service can take advantage of negotiated pricing in place with various vendors.
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