Headquartered in Salinas, California, CHISPA is the largest private, nonprofit housing developer in Monterey County, having completed more than 1,900 affordable single-family, multi-family and senior housing units that provide homes for more than 7,400 people. CHISPA depends heavily on information technology (IT) to efficiently and effectively manage all its projects and resources. At the start of 2006, CHISPA determined that their existing IT service provider was not up to the challenge of providing the level of support necessary for their growing business.
With six servers, sixteen firewalls and dozens of PCs scattered across more than twelve locations, CHISPA needed a dependable IT service provider with the ability to manage the entire network, including access control and security, performance optimization and end user requests. Frustrated by frequent downtime, lack of response and technical problems that never seemed to get resolved, CHISPA was further concerned that as their business grew and their operational needs got more complicated, their current IT provider would not be up to the task. They decided to switch to a firm that could resolve their IT issues, provide timely and reliable service and grow with them.
CHISPA selected Alvarez Technology Group, Inc. (ATG) after an intensive interview process that included a capabilities analysis and reference check. CHISPA was impressed with ATG’s monitoring and management tools, as well as access to a fully staffed support center, the OpsCenter, all elements of the iTeam services contract that CHISPA selected. Although the structure of iTeam met most of the organizations immediate needs, the plan was customized slightly to accommodate the number and type of remote locations.
Almost immediately, ATG deployed their signature remote monitoring and management appliance at CHISPA’s main office, providing an in-depth network analysis and inventory, IT management and secure remote access. Once the detail of the IT infrastructure was known, the technicians at the ATG OpsCenter were able to remotely manage all the network devices and also respond to user requests from any CHISPA employee. When the OpsCenter is unable to resolve a problem, it is escalated to an onsite engineer in a timely manner.
Early on, several security-related issues were discovered and solved, including upgraded firewalls and improved processes and procedures that enhanced overall security. ATG continues to monitor and improve the network security at CHISPA, extending “Best Practices” down to the desktop at all locations.
As new technologies appear that may be beneficial to its operations, ATG makes that information available to the management team at CHISPA. CHISPA continues to rely on ATG to provide input toward the long-range strategic plans of the organization, building the optimal IT infrastructure to support CHISPA’s growth and goals.