Infrastructure IT Services
design & implementation
Sakks works in close partnership with clients to design an IT infrastructure that is specific to their organisation and their evolving needs. Whether you are setting up a new IT infrastructure, replacing an ageing network or expanding network capacity, you can rely on Sakks to provide the design and delivery skills required to partner you from initial briefing through to final handover.
We have experience of installing and managing literally hundreds of differently configured IT environments for a wide range of clients in different sectors, and at different stages of business maturity. Above all, we understand that there is a balance to be struck between leveraging investment in existing infrastructure and new investment in an optimal solution.
Our focus is on the creation of a robust, scalable, flexible environment upon which business applications and solutions can be built cost effectively. The right network will neatly mirror your business and its operational requirements. The right solution is as individual as your business and your brand. Defining, designing and delivering such individualised solutions is a core Sakks skill.
audits and reviews
Sakks takes a rigorous - yet commercial - approach to infrastructure audits, analysing strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for future improvements.
Our experience of managing literally hundreds of differently configured IT environments means that we are well placed to understand how best to configure infrastructure for an individual client seeking our advice.
"We recognised that Sakks had the experience and skills to sort out our infrastructure and improve the service levels to our users." Mike, Oil Spill Response LTD
Our consultants and senior engineers are well qualified to benchmark your IT environment against industry best practice and emerging technology opportunities.
The core aim of a Sakks infrastructure audit is to deliver back a report and set of recommendations outlining the current position, identifying shortfalls and risks, and suggesting future improvements.
We also understand that benchmarking against the “ideal” is only useful up to a point. As business pragmatists, we recognise that useful recommendations must also consider cost (and return on investment) in addition to technical specification and performance.
transition and refreshes
Taking advantage of modern technology is critical to many businesses. Sakks delivers to clients a range of transition or refresh projects to ensure their systems are supporting their business strategy.
Sakks has the expertise and the track-record to help clients to protect their networks and data from both external and internal security threats.
IT security has never been as important as it is today. With hacking tools now widely available, businesses need to take every precaution to protect themselves from external as well as internal threats.
Sakks is an IT partner that you can trust to deal with such crucial concerns on your behalf. We have over ten years experience of defining and implementing IT security policies, and are familiar with the types of security issues faced by small and medium-sized businesses.
Specifying security solutions and policies requires expert input. As systems become increasingly interconnected, there are more potential threats to IT networks and critical business data. The irony is that as we provide better access for employees (to work remotely; for example), we also create the need for more sophisticated security solutions, systems and policies.
In parallel, it is getting easier for employees to copy and remove sensitive data - online or via simple USB drives and similar, highly portable media. Our in-depth experience ensures that we understand the evolving nature of such threats, and - more importantly - that we understand how best to protect clients from new threats as they arise.
Virtualisation lets one server do the job of multiple computers, by sharing the resources of a single computer across multiple environments.
Installing traditional physical servers would typically require a separate server for each server role. By utilising virtual server technology (Microsoft’s HyperV or VMWare, for example), the number of physical servers can be greatly reduced as virtual servers are consolidated on to fewer incidences of physical hardware. Virtualising servers will result in improved resource utilisation as well as reductions in real estate, power and cooling requirements. In addition to energy saving and lower capital expenses due to more efficient use of hardware resources, virtualisation provides high availability of resources, increased security, and improved disaster recovery processes.
A virtualised platform is highly scalable, meaning that adding additional virtual servers as your company grows does not incur the same project, labour or capital costs as adding additional physical servers. In addition, organisations that deploy a virtualised environment will also reduce their energy consumption (and thereby reduce their carbon footprint) and improve the effectiveness of their disaster recovery plan.
- Consolidation - Utilise less space, less power, less hardware to operate the same or larger application environment
- Cost control - Reduce capital costs and management costs through less hardware and reduced infrastructure administration
- Efficiency - Deliver applications in a highly efficient and scalable way
- Resilience - Leverage inherent benefits of virtualisation including high availability and business continuity
- Green IT - Improve energy efficiency and reduce your carbon footprint
- Scalability - A virtualised infrastructure that can grow as your business does
Sakks is passionate about enabling customers to focus on their strengths; confident in the knowledge that their IT systems will reliably support them and their colleagues in their business pursuits. This has been our focus for over ten years and we believe we've become quite good at it.
If you are serious about getting value from your current IT systems, or you're looking for ways to keep your business ahead of the competition, you will be amazed at how Sakks can help.
The ‘cloud’ and the applicability of this technology to small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) is a source of much debate and mis-information. Cloud is now a widely used concept and also a widely misused term, which has left many companies not knowing how – and if – to proceed. . At Sakks, we believe deploying cloud services can result in significant benefits, chief of which is greater choice and flexibility in IT infrastructure design. However, as with any other technology, the deployment of cloud services needs to be considered in light of overall business requirements. Our consultants, engineers and commercial department are expert in guiding you through the decision making process to ascertain if and where cloud is right for you.
Sakks Life-Signs is a cloud-based monitoring and measurement service that uses our market leading technology to provide you with complete visibility of your IT systems and applications, whether they are housed on your own site, hosted by Sakks or another provider, or delivered via "the cloud".
Sakks Life-Signs gives us the ability to see exactly what is happening to systems across your entire IT estate and provides you with sophisticated analytics to measure service-level agreement (SLA) adherence; perform trend analysis; estimated time-to-failure from extrapolated historicals, and map your systems performance onto your business needs.
Sakks Life-Signs can monitor and assess the operational performance of almost any device, from PCs, servers and storage devices to networking equipment and even environmental conditions.
In addition, line-of-business applications can be accurately monitored to help you react quickly to issues, and plan for the future. All monitored results can be mapped onto service-level reports. Services provided by third parties can also be monitored, analysed and compared against service levels.
data storage analysis
I'm sure, like many of us; you have a loft full of boxes, unopened since your last house move?
People tend to fill the space they are given. As they are given more, they store more. Data storage is no different. In the digital domain, we are all becoming hoarders; nowadays it’s far easier to keep than discard.
In fact, most companies are doubling their data output every 9 to 18 months.
"Many of our staff use tablets and smartphones. I had no idea that by default they create a backup to a user’s home directory, effectively placing their music, games and photos onto our servers. Each device was covertly adding significantly to our infrastructure costs." William, Devitt Insurance Services Ltd
Despite the actual cost of storage reducing, the growth rate of most IT budgets is not sufficient to close the growing gap between the costs associated with data growth. Insufficient visibility as to how storage is being consumed will inevitably result in some or all of the following repercussions:
- Direct storage costs will continue to spiral beyond available IT Budgets.
- Backups take longer requiring more investment into backup devices. In fact, infrastructure in general gets more expensive (larger storage arrays, bigger tape drives, faster network connections).
- Recovery from backups takes longer, therefore longer periods of downtime.
- Full disk platters access data more slowly; in other words server performance slowly erodes.
- Many devices are licensed based on volumes of data stored.
- A proportion of the power consumed by servers is spinning disks; more online storage means more disks, which means more power consumed.
- Moving to the cloud where storage usage is a monthly cost means every unnecessary file has a compounded monthly cost. The longer this data remains, the more you pay.
The Sakks storage analysis service can, in no time, provide customers the visibility they need of their data habits helping most reduce their storage costs by 50%. And even more for those thinking of moving to "The Cloud" or already in "The Cloud". Sakks can also put in place appropriate policies and procedures to prevent storage costs getting out of control in the future.
Sakks has successfully executed a number of data analysis services ranging in scale, duration and complexity. Our many years of experience, coupled with the caliber of our engineers, consultants and project managers, ensures that we deliver quality results, within deadline and within budget.
Sakks DSX, provides an automated, secure, fast, simple and scalable online backup solution. We also advise clients on disaster recovery planning, ensuring that business can continue in the event of the unexpected...
To ensure that your business can deal with the unforeseen, it is crucial to ensure that key data is being properly managed and secured. Traditional solutions, involving tape or data mirroring across multiple sites are available from Sakks, where appropriate.
"I love the fact that Sakks responds immediately, I can log calls through the Sakks Extranet if I need to, but their people are equally as fast if I just pick up the phone. The fact they foresee issues before they become problems is the key." Water Co, Ann
But online backup via DSX provides a solution that is less time-consuming and easier to manage for most small and medium-sized businesses (further detail regarding Sakks's DSX service is available separately).
Backing up critical data is a key component of any disaster recovery plan. In the event of a fire, a flood or some other unforeseen event, you'll need to know – in advance – that you can still access up to date information as soon as possible. The Sakks team of advisers helps clients to plan comprehensively for such possibilities.
We review your network architecture, the applications you are running, and your user activity to ensure that plans are in place to replicate what is required to keep your business running, should the worst happen.