A Conversion to the Cloud

Continental Properties office manager, Barbara Dauber, recently participated in an interview about their transition to the Cloud.  She has been with the forty- year- old company for twelve years and oversaw the project.  In her opening remarks she described the company as follows: “Our company is about ten people in size. We acquire and develop commercial properties in several states including New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Virginia… The company had a traditional network, server and desktops using Microsoft Office, with backup tapes and no full time IT person on staff.”

When asked about any preconceived notions she had about the Cloud before the change, she remarked, “I had heard about the Cloud and did not fully understand it.  It was broken down for us into usable information we could easily comprehend.  When we realized we would get the latest Microsoft Exchange and Office products, with all our support calls for no additional charges, other than our regular monthly payment, that is exactly what sold me…  Going in, we were concerned about making it work right and comprehending exactly what was going on.  Once we got the hang of it, we were good, along with some occasional tweaking.  Going from the old to the new system was done over a weekend, then dealing with user errors was a few more weeks.  In fact, we still suffer from user error.  The hiccups we encountered were in the beginning and had to do with the new configuration and had everything to do with our learning the new process.”

Barbara continued, “The main thing we now can do is work from home, as needed. Before, we had limited access to our data. Now I can get to everything on my desktop and on the server from where I want, when I want.  When our owner was in Palm Beach, we were able to conduct business and collaborate as if he were here, which was not possible before. Most of our employees now work from home; in the past, they didn’t.  In fact, during a pregnancy leave, one employee was able to not miss a beat. Now they don’t have to rush back to the office. It has given us a real sense of freedom.”

When asked if she would do anything differently, Barbara responded, “Go to school and learn more. Now that we have gone through the process, we really like it.”

“NetTek was so easy to work with. The staff was understanding and patient in explaining any issues we have had to work through. We love them because of that,” she added.

“The whole work-from- home capability has changed our lives. In the past, the outside world used to have conflicts with software versions when we interacted, now those conflicts inside and out are gone.  We are finally all on the same page.”

“The best feature for us has been the speed, especially on Outlook. We get an immense amount of e-mails and I used to go brew a pot of coffee while it loaded, but not anymore.” she said, smiling.

When asked about recommending the Cloud, Barbara responded, “ I would recommend it to companies large or small. If they do their homework, they’ll find the right partner to implement it smoothly just as we did.”

Don Perry, the company’s owner, came into the conference room and added, “I’m just glad I don’t have a computer,” which, even in this technological day and age, is not completely surprising for an owner.

In closing, Barbara stated, “My lessons learned were with previous IT companies. So when it was my decision to make, I wanted to go with someone who would take the time and have the patience to help me understand everything. That is why we have Desktops2Go® and NetTek here today. We honestly enjoy dealing with them.”