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Facilitating a Windows 7 Upgrade for an International Law Firm

Legal | Technology Deployment

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An international law firm partnered with TEKsystems to upgrade their operating system on more than 440 units in seven offices.

The client is a major law and lobbying firm with 18 worldwide locations and more than 850 attorneys. Founded in 1945, the client specializes in public policy, energy and international trade. TEKsystems has partnered with this client for more than 10 years.

Operating systems upgrades bring many benefits to users, but IT leaders must weigh the advantages of implementing change against the potential for disrupting business. A fast-paced business cannot pause while technicians work on staff computers; IT leaders must complete major initiatives without interrupting work.

In addition, major technology upgrades often require additional staff resources. But getting contingent workers up and running—especially at multiple locations—can divert IT leaders from strategic priorities. Onboarding, training and managing logistics can also add considerable delays to technology deployments.

Many IT leaders choose a coordinated deployment team services (CDTS) option to accomplish a complex, resource-intensive project. In the CDTS model, the vendor does more than simply provide qualified help; they also manage onboarding, training, logistics and reporting. Freed from these administrative burdens, IT managers can focus on directing the core elements of the project. 

A CDTS venture is neither a fully outsourced nor a basic staffing engagement, but a partnership between client and vendor. A successful CDTS partnership requires open communication and flawless coordination from the vendor. 

Microsoft Windows 7, Microsoft Office 2007

The client, a large international law firm, needed to upgrade their operating systems to Windows 7 in multiple locations. However, the time-sensitive nature of legal work and billing would make taking staff offline during business hours both disruptive and costly. 

In addition, the IT team needed additional staff resources. They had created a specific process for upgrading the operating system and migrating data but did not have enough in-house technicians to accomplish the work. The tight timeline meant temporary help had to be highly skilled and pre‑trained so they could begin working the moment they arrived on the client site.

Ultimately, the client required a seamless coordination and deployment of resources in multiple locations. In order to reduce the burden on their core IT team, the client preferred to work with a vendor that could provide resources in widely dispersed locations across the United States.

TEKsystems proposed a CDTS model, in which we would both staff the project and also administer all aspects of logistics, training and onboarding, while the client’s team would control the technical process. 

The upgrade would occur over a two-month period, allowing one or two consecutive nights per location after the close of business. Floor support personnel would return to support users the day after the implementation. 

To streamline communications for the client, our delivery manager would act as a single point of contact. He would meet with the client’s project team to review the schedule and corresponding sites, gather technical work instructions and determine the required skill sets.

Our staffing team would then identify resources that met the client’s requirements. Using TEKsystems’ proprietary Staffing Quality Process®, we would screen prequalified technicians to ensure they had the right skills, including at least two years of experience upgrading and configuring PCs, troubleshooting, migrating data and configuring printers. We would also assign technical team leads to supervise technicians at each site; leads would have extensive experience in upgrading PCs and the ability to troubleshoot more complicated problems. 

The delivery manager would convey the client’s technical instructions to the technical team lead. Before the engagement, the lead would hold preflight calls with every resource to communicate those instructions, as well as the client’s dress code and other cultural expectations. The knowledgeable team lead would use the call as an additional opportunity to verify resources have the skills and experience to perform the work. 

To ensure the process worked smoothly, our delivery manager would schedule check-in calls with each team lead and technician at the start of on-site work. Once the technicians arrived, the client’s IT workers would supervise their direct work. Our technical lead would serve as the first point of escalation for any team or process issues.

Finally, the technical team lead would return during business hours the next day to support the client’s users. He or she would also document the work and submit it to our delivery manager, who would include it in weekly status and budget updates to the client’s project team. The client chose TEKsystems for the engagement because they were confident we would be able to deliver high-quality IT resources at every site across the United States. Furthermore, our ability to manage the administrative and training components of the engagement would allow for a rapid deployment without taxing their internal resources.

Without taking the law offices offline during business hours, TEKsystems successfully implemented the Windows 7 upgrade using the client’s process. We provided approximately 40 technicians with exactly the right skills and preparation to perform the upgrade for more than 440 units in seven offices. We also achieved a 100 percent on-time rate, surpassing the client’s strict metric of 97 percent.

During the course of the engagement, the client asked us to add Microsoft Office 2007 user support. After reviewing the skill sets of our highly qualified technical leads, we determined that we could offer this support without altering the statement of work. 

Our team included approximately 40 technicians and technical team leads (who also served as floor support personnel) and a dedicated delivery manager. This CDTS solution allowed the client’s project team to interact with a single point of contact while maintaining control of the technical process. The model allowed the client to focus on the core work, while allowing for rapid speed-to-productivity.

The client was pleased with the implementation. As envisioned, the operating system upgrade occurred at night and on weekends, and attorneys and staff were able to start work the following day without any interruption. 

  • Preparation. The client required a perfect implementation that would not interfere with staff productivity. Our careful vetting of resources and preparation ensured all technicians arrived on time and could immediately begin working, allowing us to complete the upgrade with no delays.
  • Flexibility. We provided technicians for sites across the United States according to the client’s tightly choreographed schedule and during overnight hours. In addition, when the client changed requirements to include Microsoft Office 2007 expertise, we delivered personnel equipped with those skills without changing the statement of work.
  • Partnership. The extra care we took in understanding the client’s needs—and ensuring that our technicians and processes met them—allowed for a seamless implementation. We facilitated two-way communication between the client’s team and our resources, with our delivery manager serving as the hub of information. Our delivery manager talked to the client’s project team almost daily to ensure smooth continuity of operations, and he provided weekly status and budget updates to keep them informed. Our well-planned processes and open communication created the trust necessary for the client’s team to hand off the procedural and administrative components of the initiative and focus on the key technical aspects.

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