THE CLIENT: The Macon Housing Authority (MHA) is a public housing authority that provides public housing services in the city of Macon and Bibb County. With a budget in excess of $48.6 million, the Authority is governmental in nature but is not a part of the general city or county government. Deriving the majority of its revenue from rents and federal subsidies, responsible expenditures and budget management are critical to the agency’s success. The organization has 95 full time employees in fourteen locations throughout Macon. Learn more at www.maconhousing.com.
THE CHALLENGE : Over the last few years, UTG has worked with MHA to completely rebuild their 25 year old network from the ground up including replacing hubs with business class switches, implementing an anti-virus solution, and rolling out a company-wide desktop replacement and Microsoft Office integration. In 2011 MHA’s new ERP system, Yardi, required that additional servers be added to the network, so they were considering the purchase of four new physical servers solely to run this line of business application. While evaluating the requirements for Yardi and looking at their future IT needs, UTG noted that MHA was paying an exorbitant amount each month for their antiquated AT&T Centrex phone system that included separate lines for phone, fax, and internet to each of their 10 offices.
THE SOLUTION: UTG recommended that MHA purchase only two physical servers for their new ERP application and build virtual servers using VMware to easily handle the processing and capacity needs of the application. UTG also recommended a SAN for the required shared storage that is part of a virtualized network. Once MHA was comfortable with virtualization in their environment, UTG recommended that they upgrade their antiquated phone system to a Mitel converged MLPS that would work seamlessly in their virtualized network.
THE RESULT: UTG virtualized MHA’s entire network and added a NetApp SAN. Along with running Yardi on their virtual servers, they were able to upgrade and virtualize Microsoft Exchange 2010. Thanks to their new network configuration and VMware implementation, MHA was able to easily deploy Mitel’s converged MPLS phone system that runs in a virtualized data center enabling voice and data to be managed in the same place on the same hardware. Using Mitel’s converged network for voice and data, MHA offices increased their connectivity from 3Mbs to 9Mbs for internet and increased from SDSL to 1.5Mb T1 at each of their satellite offices back to the central office. Their virtualized network–including voice and data and 3x the connectivity–costs about one-third of what they were previously paying for just their antiquated AT&T system with DSL services.
“UTG and Mitel effectively changed the way our business thinks about communication. UTG’s expertise and Mitel’s IP equipment gave us the tools to route calls effectively and manage inbound calls at remote sites so that we can properly track and allocate resources when needed. UTG is a valued partner and has helped to evolve our corporate culture away from a Big Bell and expensive faxing options and toward electronic communications
and paperless transmissions.”
– Brad Burdette, Systems Analyst Macon Housing Authority