IPS applies the right combination of knowledge, skill and passion to every construction project they manage. When a client asked IPS to do something they hadn’t tackled before, it tested this dedication. IPS would need to collaborate with outside vendors on an existing modification retrofit that involved a complex pharmaceutical build-out. The request required the temporary setup of a remote office. Engineers and collaborators could modify or review large Revit® Building Information Modeling (BIM) files.
“We didn’t want people downloading BIM files from SharePoint or email and working with them locally on their devices. They could miss changes if they pulled the wrong version of the model. It would impact the project,” explains Martin Figlarz, CAD/BIM Manager for IPS. To add complexity to the task, pharmaceutical regulations included many requirements for documentation and access security. So, IPS needed to track every aspect of the job, from design iterations and reviews to approvals and more.
Figlarz wanted to work with a Dell Premier Partner, so he reached out to Logical Front. After evaluating the project requirements, Logical Front’s experts decided that an enterprise approach would best satisfy its needs.
“This was something we had never done before and Logical Front responded. The same day I reached out, they were helping us to resolve issues,” says Figlarz.
Logical Front customized a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), including Dell Compellent SCv2020 SAN for storing BIM data centrally at headquarters. Meanwhile, Precision Rack 7910 XCTO Servers hosted the virtual desktops. Dell Precision M3800 and M4800 mobile workstations, Dell Latitude E6540 notebooks, and Dell Precision 5810XCTO workstations ensured team mobility.
Now, any authorized stakeholder could access BIM data at any location by logging in with security credentials using Citrix. This ensured everyone had access to the real-time, updated server-based BIM files.
Logical Front provided all the software updates to ensure that the configuration ran smoothly. “We want our clients to feel comfortable knowing that we’re not putting information where anyone can get to it; we need it to be stored securely behind a firewall and Logical Front helped make that happen,” adds Figlarz.
Because Logical Front deployed a Dell end-to-end solution, IPS could custom mix world-class client and VDI technology. This technology delivers excellent outcomes with less cost and seamless integration that will offer value for years to come.
With Citrix deployed, IPS saved around $100,000 compared to the cost of leasing and configuring high-end desktops. Consequently, collaborators access information via VDI from existing laptops and computers using their login credentials. They also saved on the cost of installing a VPN by connecting to the Citrix app via reliable internet service. These savings have continued with two new locations, and will apply as VDI is used internationally in the future.
The VDI/client configuration makes it possible for IPS to launch remote offices quickly and deploy resources reliably to any stakeholder, anywhere. As a result, they can extend their international reach and support global offices with domestic IT services.
Consequently, the new system also simplified collaboration by bringing in new resources to help overcome project roadblocks. Remote collaborators could work as efficiently as their on-site counterparts because they could access data centralized Dell servers. Additionally, work can continue if an employee is home sick or snowed in, or if vendors or subs are involved. This capability proved it’s worth when one office’s server went down. IT recovered a backup on a virtual machine at headquarters. As a result, the 30 man team accessed the VDI from home or the office, avoiding the catastrophe of three days of downtime.
“We met a hard date with our client on this project, which is very important to us,” says Figlarz.
Logical Front took only four weeks to roll out a custom client/ VDI solution to help IPS deliver on its project goals. The process included tight coordination between internal IPS staff and Logical Front’s technical experts.
“What stands out to me with Logical Front is their focus on making IPS better and putting technology knowledge into our hands,” explains Figlarz. “We want to do some things on our own and have a partner we can rely on—and Logical Front makes this possible.”
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