World-class technology enables Basildon Borough Council to deliver exceptional community services

Together we’re using technology to drive exceptional community services. Basildon Borough Council have set themselves an ambitious target to have the best town centers in the South East of England. Their existing technology environment wasn’t capable of supporting the delivery of smart, flexible citizen services. Digital transformation was the best way forward. An upgraded enterprise network and data center with managed services for critical council services enabled them to reduce cost, innovate faster and focus on strategic regeneration initiatives.

Why first-class services need world-class technology

Serving a population of over 180,000 people in Essex, Basildon Borough Council is one of
the largest local authorities in the region. The towns of Basildon, Billericay, Pitsea, Laindon and Wickford fall under the Council’s jurisdiction. It’s an important economic hub in the region and has the second largest (and fastest-growing) economy in the Thames Gateway.

The Council is in the process of delivering a GBP 100 million plan to upgrade the borough’s town centers. They have an ambitious plan to transform Basildon town center, creating first-class facilities for local residents and businesses, as well as developing surrounding areas. This includes a state-of-the-art campus for South Essex College, plans to ensure their roads can accommodate electric vehicles and continuing to facilitate the rollout of superfast broadband.

In addition to these undertakings, the Council needs to take care of a number of existing facilities and services for local residents. This required robust, stable technology infrastructure to do so. Limited investment in their technology environment had resulted in an outdated network, with insufficient resources and skills to support it.

The case for digital transformation was clear. So was the need to make some significant changes to achieve their transformation objectives.

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Which services?

Managed Services, Consulting Services, Technology Infrastructure Services, Data Center Infrastructure Services, Network Infrastructure Management, Managed Hybrid Infrastructure Services, Managed Security Services, Managed Network Services, Managed IT services, Service desk support for end users

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Which technologies?

Cisco LAN devices, Cisco Meraki wireless network devices, Cisco Hyperflex Servers, Cisco ASA devices, Cisco ISE devices

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Which partners?

Cisco

‘Technology is key to the outstanding services we want everyone to access. And it can transform the relationships we have with our communities, enabling them to help themselves, each other and us to together make the places we live and work in be the best they can be.’
Councillor Gavin Callaghan , Leader of Basildon Council

How Basildon Borough Council laid a foundation for transformation

We consulted with the Council early in their transformation journey to understand their ambitions and challenges. Our experts advised them on how best to transition and transform their technology infrastructure in order to achieve their long-term objectives, all within a tight budget of public funds.

Immediately, it made sense to improve their existing infrastructure. The network was upgraded for greater resilience and new data center equipment was setup off premises to a central location outside of Basildon. For business continuity, the integrated solution was designed to be deployed in phases, with each migration meticulously planned and managed during the transition.

To optimize their infrastructure and cybersecurity posture, we combined the data center, network and cybersecurity infrastructure with our suite of managed security services to reduce complexity for the Council.

This allowed us to take care of their internal IT infrastructure, rebuilding platforms and partnering with them to augment and bolster their IT department.

During this time, it was critical that both employees and end users remained unaffected.

Our joint aim was to seamlessly migrate and transform services to deliver a superior end user experience. To achieve this we deployed an outsourced service desk, supporting around 1,000 end users.

What employees and citizens can look forward to

Working with a single partner who can deliver a suite of integrated IT services – while also managing all technology vendors in one, significantly helped the Council to manage this critical part of their transformation program.

All departments and branch sites – housing, planning and environment, customer services, licensing, leisure centers – are now connected on a single, resilient network. On top of this, corporate and guest-access Wi-Fi connectivity is available at the Council’s central office. All which will support a planned device migration in the near future.

An application discovery audit is also under way, as part of a broader virtualization initiative to determine which platforms and applications can be migrated to the cloud (such as Citrix, Active Directory, Exchange and System Center Configuration Manager).

For longer-term initiatives, the Council has a robust infrastructure and architecture that will allow them to bolt on additional services and technologies, as needed.

While this is a significant step in the right direction, it’s by no means the last. What’s been implemented to date has laid the groundwork for innovation and continual service improvement – and will help the Council deliver exceptional services that benefit residents and businesses.

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