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End User Experience Monitoring

End User Experience Monitoring

How a leading U.S. law firm adopted Teneo’s service to improve visibility, security, and performance.

At a glance

1
This leading U.S. law firm took a proactive approach to improving user experience and IT performance.
2
Observing that enhanced visibility was key, they engaged Teneo for support with their use case.
3
Utilizing Teneo’s End User Experience Monitoring service, they gained the required insights needed to make significant cost savings and improved performance, security, and productivity across the business.

About the company

This leading U.S. law firm is one of the top 100 law firms in the country, with over 500 attorneys and 18 offices across North America. In a 2020 global survey, it ranked as the 177th highest-grossing law firm in the world, with a total revenue of $255,897,000.

The company prides itself on its focus on diversity and inclusion and holds a strong desire to improve equality in the legal profession and give back to the community.

Previous way of operating & business limitations

With over 25 years’ experience, the firm’s Director of Architecture and Desktop Services joined just over two years ago to oversee cloud and IT infrastructure. Upon joining, his key priority was to understand the company’s IT challenges and to take proactive steps to improve end-user experience and performance.

Originally, the firm was running an endpoint estate that consisted of 50% desktops and 50% laptops. At the core of the organization is the NetDocuments application (also known as NetDocs) for document management. The application is integrated with O365, among other applications. For Redlining, the organization uses Workshare (now Litera). They also use multiple collaboration tools, including Zoom and Cisco Jabber.

Initially, the firm’s Director of Architecture and Desktop Services observed that their NetDocuments integrations weren’t working as well as they could and that the business was dealing with several bug issues impacting performance, which had prompted user complaints. He also remarked that, at that time, the company’s Desktop Services practice used to carry out operating system updates, or machine re-imaging, for 1000 people over a lengthy 5–6-month period. To do this, they’d utilize 25GB USB sticks, moving them from machine to machine.

The key issue recognized was that the IT Services team needed to take a more proactive approach. Without the necessary monitoring tools, they couldn’t see where issues were arising from. For example, they couldn’t tell if user issues stemmed from training, the hardware, incompatibility, or a drift in application management. This lack of performance insight meant that the IT Services team was primarily working on a reactionary basis. As a result, diagnosis and resolution of user-impacting issues were slow, leading to a poor end-user experience, and reduced productivity.

Commenting, the Director of Architecture and Desktop Services said, “To make the necessary improvements, it was clear that issues across performance and security needed to be addressed proactively; we needed to stop the bleed. But, with a lack of visibility, we couldn’t see where the issues were coming from, and there was no way to measure the health of the endpoints.”

To build out a soft ROI, they made some basic calculations. They estimated that their lawyers commanded a $100 per hour fee. Based on this ROI study, they calculated that the situation was costing the firm millions of dollars in lost productivity.

A better way forward with Teneo

The firm was focused on IT improvement and wanted to restore faith in the service they provide. To do so, they needed to know what users were talking about, understand their problems, troubleshoot, identify root cause, and make proactive resolutions.

Prior to the Director of Architecture and Desktop Services joining, the firm had already taken steps to improve performance. Working with Teneo, they’d carried out a Proof of Concept (POC) for End User Experience Monitoring (EUEM) in 2018. At the time, the firm didn’t have the resources to give the project time or justification.

In fact, the objective at that stage had been to see if their WAN Optimization solution would deliver any benefit to NetDocs, which was performing slowly on a VPN line.

They’d wanted to identify the root cause of the performance problem, between the endpoint, the network, and the cloud. This prompted the Director of Architecture and Desktop Services to expand the previous use case. He decided to embark on a new and revitalized project that would focus on achieving deep visibility, starting from the endpoint. In tandem, the firm also ensured that an IT support team was available to handle out-of-office calls to increase user satisfaction, and set about ‘making IT whole again’.

The Director of Architecture and Desktop Services explained, “Finding the root cause of our issues was all-encompassing: was it the endpoint, the cloud, the network? Without deep insight, it was difficult to understand where performance issues were arising. We needed complete visibility, as deep as we could get.”

Turning to Teneo’s End User Experience Monitoring service, the firm worked in partnership with Teneo to create the new use case. The solution enabled the firm to gain the precise insights needed to monitor and manage their end users’ experience with a service package that includes 5 hours of professional service time per month.

The Director of Architecture and Desktop Services recalls, “During this process, we got a great deal of support from Teneo. From regular cadence to knowledge transfer. 90% of what we needed was out of the box; the other small percentage was custom-built, where we created specific dashboards. For example, we analyzed and compared old and new laptops and assessed their thermal characteristics, finding that they were extremely inefficient. The benefit for us was the right mix of technology within reach. We know we can push the EUEM platform quite far out of the box should we need to.

down quote up quote As an IT team, we don’t want to be like Superman: a hero coming in to save the day as a one-off event. We’d prefer to be more like Batman: silently but surely keeping everything working in the background.
Director of Architecture and Desktop Services

An improved strategy

Based on the strength of the insight gained during the initial use case, the team had end-to-end visibility across the business and was able to pinpoint and resolve issues quickly. This included many issues not reported to IT, such as the fact that 50-60 users were regularly experiencing blue screens.

“I was dumbfounded by the results,” said the Director of Architecture and Desktop Services. “Not least because we’d had limited visibility beforehand. But suddenly, there were 1000 things out there that we could see and report on.

Armed with the insight they needed, the Director of Architecture and Desktop Services and his team presented a number of data-driven change recommendations. Although some changes were significant and initially met with some trepidation, the recommendations were fully endorsed when the data was presented from the pilot. This included the firm making significant changes to the endpoint devices used across the business. Previously, the company spent circa $2,400 on a basic setup, but discovered that the devices were under-specified for end user requirements.

As a result of new insight, they switched company-wide devices from a mixture of laptops and desktops to 100% laptops. They also changed their laptop manufacturer from Lenovo to Dell to increase hardware capacity. This resulted in significant savings of $600 per unit and a 50% jump in hardware capacity, as well as a 100% improvement in performance.

“We needed to make IT decisions data-driven, rather than emotional and based on feelings or gut checks,” says the Director of Architecture and Desktop Services.

With deep visibility into end user devices, the firm’s IT Services team shifted from being reactive, to proactive. For example, they were able to issue a new device to an employee in advance of their existing device breaking down. And now, if they see an issue with an application on a specific end user device, they can reach out to the individual ahead of time to check if they’re having problems.

Since the team has become more proactive, they’ve been able to take care of the ‘low-hanging fruit’. This includes addressing chronic issues, such as poor batteries, driver issues, high CPU and memory, all of which has vastly improved the reputation of the IT team. Productivity has improved on the business side,
which is measurable by billable hours, as well as on the IT side.

The company estimates $100K in infrastructure savings, as well as huge time savings made for the IT team in terms of understanding priorities in hardware replacement and problem root-cause analysis.

The Director of Architecture and Desktop Services commented, “Before working with Teneo, we were primarily working on a reactionary basis. Now, people right across the business are very impressed about how proactive we can be; they’ve never seen anything quite like it.”

Additionally, the firm made significant improvements to IT security and compliance, which is extremely important to them, especially from an application perspective. Each month, the firm goes through a security patch cycle to address vulnerabilities to devices and data.

They now utilize Teneo’s End User Experience Monitoring Service to gain insight into machines that risk causing compliance or patching drift. Previously, 50% of company devices were lagging behind the patch cycle. This has reduced to less than 1% following the implementation of changes made.

“Now, rather than throwing spaghetti at the wall, we can be more targeted and consistent in our approach. We can make sure we target the exact devices that need updates, and we can carry out patch compliance,” said the Director of Architecture and Desktop Services.

With Teneo’s support, the firm’s IT strategy is making enormous leaps forward. With visibility now in place, they’re currently benchmarking and developing their 2021 and 2022 plans, which include new applications, cloud migration, and expanded reach.

“As an IT team, we don’t want to be like Superman: a hero coming in to save the day as a one-off event,” the Director of Architecture and Desktop Services analogized. “We’d prefer to be more like Batman: silently but surely keeping everything working in the background.”

Dealing with exceptional events

With the visibility provided by Teneo’s End User Experience Monitoring Service, the firm saw considerable gains. And, when the COVID-19 global pandemic hit, the team was in an excellent position, well equipped to deal with the move to remote working.

With the eradication of blind spots, the IT team could continue to deal proactively with potential issues arising from their newly distributed workforce. For example, in September 2020, an arson attack in Phoenix, AZ, brought down 12,000 fiber lines which resulted in residential network performance plummeting.

Through the visibility that Teneo’s End User Experience Monitoring service provides, the IT Services team was able to identify that the issue was an ISP (Internet Service Provider) problem. This deflected potential frustration from employees, who were proactively contacted to assure them that it wasn’t an issue with their device or the company systems.

Service value

The firm’s IT team has built a genuine partnership with Teneo, benefitting from knowledge transfer so that they can become early adopters of new technologies. “The expertise and guidance from Teneo are exceptional,” adds the Director of Architecture and Desktop Services.

“I’ve always felt like we’re an important customer. Teneo’s End User Experience Monitoring has become very sticky and an essential part of how we do things; it’s become embedded in our process. The Teneo team aren’t overbearing, and they get things just right.”

“Our partnership with Teneo has made a significant impact on the business. It’s a true partnership, and our teams bounce off one another. We are huge fans!”

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