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Environmental Nonprofit

Location: San Francisco, CA| Users: 275| Industry: Nonprofit
The Challenge

This San Francisco headquartered environmental nonprofit helps the U.S. National Park Service operate many national parks. Its 14 locations around the San Francisco Bay Area include internationally renowned landmarks like Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge. The organization relies on its computer network to manage programs and payroll, communicate with employees and volunteers, and serve the public across 80,000 acres of national parkland.

To stretch its tight budget, the nonprofit maintained just two in-house IT staffers, outsourcing all other computer network operations and maintenance on a time-and-materials basis.  After several years, that was no longer a cost-effective option. The non-profit was also struggling to serve ever-growing numbers of park visitors with six servers from three different vendors, email and server software that was as much as a decade old, and an aging data backup system that was both slow and unreliable. They needed a computer network that was more reliable to use, easier to support, and less expensive to maintain.

The Solution

Xantrion developed a multi-phase, IT strategic plan that addressed all of the organization’s needs. First, Xantrion replaced the legacy servers with two power-efficient servers. One server is live; the other provides fully redundant data backups in case of system failure or data loss. Next, Xantrion migrated the nonprofit’s email to Microsoft Exchange in the cloud to ensure constant email access, even if the main office suffered a power failure or Internet outage. Finally, Xantrion took over management and maintenance of the entire computer network for a single monthly fee.

“With our previous IT support firm, there was no incentive for them to keep everything running, because let’s face it, their bottom line increased with every system failure,” says the manager of information systems. “By comparison, Xantrion’s flat fee pricing model incents them to keep things running.”

The Outcome

The organization’s computer network is more speedy and stable. In its first year with Xantrion, the organization experienced less than two hours total downtime making their IT support change a success. The servers ensure high performance for all the organization’s applications, including payroll, scheduling, and accounting, and deliver reliable remote access at every location from the Marin Headlands to Alcatraz. Redundant servers and cloud-based email minimize the risk of data loss and keep communication running smoothly around the clock. Most importantly, Xantrion is allowing the non-profit to make the most of its IT budget — both by helping the non-profit predict its monthly expenses and by installing hardware that costs less to run and requires less maintenance.

“Thanks to Xantrion, we can take on new projects without needing to increase our IT support staff or oversee day-to-day operations,” the manager says. “I can be more involved in planning ways to improve our ability to serve the public and conserve the park for the future.”