The Background 

The Big Life group (BLG) was formed in 2002 and became the first group and one of the largest social businesses in the country. Their mission is to change the world by creating opportunities for people, to change their lives, doing good business, improving what they do and Influencing change. Based in Manchester the group is made up of 5 businesses and 3 charities across 30 sites, offering: employment support, children and family services (children centres, day nurseries, family intervention), supported housing, production and sale of The Big Issue in the North, user led mental health services, primary healthcare, and social support.  The Big Life Group also consists of Big Life Schools which a multi-academy trust comprising Longsight Community Primary, based in Longsight and Unity Community Primary, based in Cheetham. 

The Requirement 

In 2015 BLG tendered for an ICT managed service comprising of cloud solutions and support services. BLG was looking for a proactive partner that they could work with to further develop the ICT service and underpin their continued growth and success. BLG wanted a partner that could understand and demonstrate the importance of good quality service delivery and customer service, whilst having the technical expertise to help BLG shape and develop new opportunities for service improvement as well as demonstrate an alignment with BLG’s mission and values. After a competitive tender process, BLG chose EE as their preferred ICT managed service partner. 

The Solution 

In today’s fast-moving world, the need to adapt and change with it is paramount to staying relevant, something which will resonate with most business across the UK. Working in such a challenging environment, as BLG do, requires the support of an agile IT system, which can meet the needs of the many people who are working for and supporting the organisation.   

Since 2016 EE has been working with BLG to help them develop their IT system to meet the changing demands of their organisation. With a large mobile workforce, the system needs to be able to deliver a wide range of services to support their activities on daily basis no matter what their location. In addition, challenges include the need to support the group’s digital business drivers, unified communications and a connected, paperless organisation.    

With an approach firmly rooted in understanding how technology needs to underpin the way in which an organisation and its people work, the latest developments have seen IT solution centred around a cloud first approach integrating EE’s own cloud service, office365 and mobile devices. This delivered the required flexibility of working and enabled senior management to provide accurate financial planning by having their infrastructure costs delivered as a fully supported yearly service charge.    

To support BLG EE provide a Managed Service delivered in accordance to ITIL best practices including a helpdesk to provide user support, managed change, and monitoring and managing the hosted customer environment in EE’s data centre.  

The helpdesk provides a single point of contact for BLG ICT users where they can log incidents, obtain help and request change for any ICT related enquiries, including resetting passwords.  EE provides remote support to BLG ICT users, which allows us to access and control remote computers, laptops and other internet-connected devices across BLG sites.   

We believe technology can make a difference to the people and organisations we work with and we hope that the service we have delivered for BLG goes some to ensuring they can continue to create opportunities for people to change their lives well into the future.  

“The team  at European Electronique is an excellent and trusted partner who have helped us drive ICT forward. The ongoing support we receive from the European Electronique is flexible, reliable and responsive.” 

Mo Chunara, Head of IT