+ Post New Thread
Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 49
BSF Thread, Some Facts (Not Rumours) Required Regarding RM, Northgate and Redstone in United Kingdom (UK) Specific Forums; We're going over to Interim Managed Services from January and it is now public that the bidders are RM, Northgate ...
  1. #1
    Richie1972's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Blackburn
    Posts
    239
    Thank Post
    2
    Thanked 6 Times in 6 Posts
    Rep Power
    19

    Some Facts (Not Rumours) Required Regarding RM, Northgate and Redstone

    We're going over to Interim Managed Services from January and it is now public that the bidders are RM, Northgate and Redstone.
    Can anyone give me some FACTUAL pros and cons:
    1. What happens to the Network managers?
    2. What happens to creativity and development (as opposed to just having one system, hardware, software foisted upon us)?
    3. What happens regarding other - not IT - jobs we do around school?
    4. What about help desk (is it local to school or based in India)?
    5. How much access and freedom do the remaining IT staff have?
    6. How many redundancies have been made (either by economic reasons or change of conditions)?
    7. What new opportunities are opended up (I don't mean moving on up the managed service provider)?
    8. If there are any Network Managers left in BSF schools are they supported and allowed to stay - or are they "encouraged" to move on or up?
    10. During the Interim service do things remain the same or do new systems, software and hardware get forced on us?
    11. How are hours, holidays and salaries affected?
    12. How are the remaining IT staff supported (local, remote only)?
    13. What sort of improvement (or worsening) of service is provided by having EVERY IT call routing through a possibly foreign helpdesk?

    Please note: I am looking for FACTUAL evidence and NOT hearsay - I need to reassure myself, my school, etc (or confirm the worst)

  2. #2
    Face-Man's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    London
    Posts
    577
    Thank Post
    11
    Thanked 58 Times in 40 Posts
    Rep Power
    70
    I suspect you will need to ask the bidders these things as each contract and bid is different. I'm surprised that things are moving that quickly when you still have three bidders as there is normally a lot of discussion with the last two. I would really try and get the Bidders to answer these question (and post them here) as they will be all charm at present and it will give you some promises to hold the winner to in January.

  3. #3
    Richie1972's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Blackburn
    Posts
    239
    Thank Post
    2
    Thanked 6 Times in 6 Posts
    Rep Power
    19
    things are moving scarily quickly.
    I know each bid is different, but I am just looking at info regarding each company's past experience to get an idea of how they'll treat us.
    There has been info on here regarding job losses with RM (Hackney) just wondering if there wasn't much truth in that and that other companies haven't been doing the same (plus answers to my other questions from those who've experienced it would certainly help)

  4. #4

    elsiegee40's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Kent
    Posts
    11,199
    Thank Post
    1,806
    Thanked 2,217 Times in 1,635 Posts
    Rep Power
    802
    It might be worth PMing Deaks

    He's gone through the process with Northgate. You can search for his threads on here about it

  5. #5
    Zoom7000's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    London
    Posts
    958
    Thank Post
    309
    Thanked 86 Times in 57 Posts
    Rep Power
    33
    Hi Richie,

    I'm due to be TUPEd over to RM on Monday. So I will do my best to answer your questions based on my experiences.

    Contrary to popular belief, the process has been very smooth. RM have been very helpful and even though I had union backing, there was very little worry through the majority of the process.

    1. What happens to the Network managers?
    Nothing at all. My Network Manager is being TUPEd along with me. He will still be my immediate Line Manager in terms of the main contact point of the Network and delegation of tasks etc.

    2. What happens to creativity and development (as opposed to just having one system, hardware, software foisted upon us)?
    In terms of the Interim Service, very little. You'll find that 90% of your day to day activities will remain the same and aside from the increased logging of calls and the occasional reporting, it is very unlikely that any major changes will be made to your network until you move to the new school building. For us, it is no change. We can still purchase what we like, from who we like. Just ensuring that we get the best value for money and support which we do already.

    3. What happens regarding other - not IT - jobs we do around school?
    This depends entirely on the company taking over your employment. From experiences with previously TUPEd RM employees RM have been very open to local circumstances and 1 technician was even allowed to continue his voluntary teaching now that he has left his TUPE contract and been promoted to a fully fleged RM contract.

    4. What about help desk (is it local to school or based in India)?
    You will still be the main point of contact for in school support. Just as you have been previously. There is no Indian call centre. At least not with RM.

    5. How much access and freedom do the remaining IT staff have?
    Until the new school and new network, you are free to do as you wish as you currently do.


    6. How many redundancies have been made (either by economic reasons or change of conditions)?
    RM have never made any TUPEd employees redundant and none have left since being TUPEd.

    7. What new opportunities are opended up (I don't mean moving on up the managed service provider)?
    On my very first day, I am getting Call logging training, I have already been told another course is on the way and I have been told to complete a technical questionnaire to asses my needs for any further training. So yes, training and a lot of it. Which I welcome whole heartedly.

    8. If there are any Network Managers left in BSF schools are they supported and allowed to stay - or are they "encouraged" to move on or up?
    No one is forced one way or another.

    9. You missed number 9!

    10. During the Interim service do things remain the same or do new systems, software and hardware get forced on us?
    99% of systems, software, hardware etc will remain the same. You may have to deal with a new call logging system, but everything else will hardly change for the time being.

    11. How are hours, holidays and salaries affected?
    Not at all. This is the point of TUPE. These will be honoured exactly as is currently. Your paydates and holiday terms may change to reflect the company dates, but the amounts will be fully honoured as per your current contract.

    12. How are the remaining IT staff supported (local, remote only)?
    There is a remote support helpdesk, either at HQ or a local office. But these are fully available for your benefit and there are escalation routes available too.

    13. What sort of improvement (or worsening) of service is provided by having EVERY IT call routing through a possibly foreign helpdesk?
    This doesn't apply in my situation. Maybe come the new school staff may be required to log calls through RM, however, this is an individual school decision based on what the school feels suitable.
    Don't get me wrong I went through some of the very same worries that you are experiencing right now, just see some of my previous posts. I was definately not a happy bunny at the beginning of the process. However, I'm already experiencing that we are getting more support than I have in the whole 4.5 years I've been at school and considering I wasn't even employed by RM yet, this is pretty decent of them.

    All I've gotta say is don't believe all the rumours. It's not as bad as it sounds and you'll probably find that it benefits you both personally and professionally.

    If you wanna know anymore, feel free to drop me a PM.

  6. 6 Thanks to Zoom7000:

    ButterflyMoon (31st May 2009), Face-Man (3rd April 2009), glensc (3rd April 2009), Hightower (28th May 2010), nephilim (15th March 2010), trogers (6th April 2009)

  7. #6
    Richie1972's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Blackburn
    Posts
    239
    Thank Post
    2
    Thanked 6 Times in 6 Posts
    Rep Power
    19
    I was worried about missing one out - subconsciously I still missed it out
    Ok, that has reduced my fears - slightly.
    I thought RM had been making redundancies:

    Job Losses in Hackney BSF and RM?

    Or is this just rumour?

  8. #7
    Zoom7000's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    London
    Posts
    958
    Thank Post
    309
    Thanked 86 Times in 57 Posts
    Rep Power
    33
    As far as I'm aware it's just rumours. BSF has been a very touchy subject and lots of rumours have flown around. I'm not aware of the Hackney situation, but I was told by previous TUPEd employees that it isn't in the bidders interest to make redundancies. In most cases the local technical staff are the most important asset if they are looking for a successful managed service provision.

    Like I said, I can't speak for other bidders, but as I have been told on many occasions, RM have not got rid of any TUPEd staff.

  9. #8
    ngreenwood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Leeds, Yorkshire
    Posts
    73
    Thank Post
    5
    Thanked 11 Times in 10 Posts
    Rep Power
    15
    I agree with the answers to your questions. As a guy who has worked in a council run ICT team and now works for RM but was not TUPED I an in a unique position to step back and view it all.

    1. What happens to the Network managers?
    They get Tuped in the same role. Managed Services need onsite management just as much as anyone else.
    2. What happens to creativity and development (as opposed to just having one system, hardware, software foisted upon us)?
    Depends on the contract and the current situation of the school. If it is a complete rebuild then it will likely be a new ICT system. In the case of RM this could mean CC4.
    3. What happens regarding other - not IT - jobs we do around school?
    That is something you can discuss with the company
    4. What about help desk (is it local to school or based in India)?
    The RM helpdesk is in Oxfordshire
    5. How much access and freedom do the remaining IT staff have?
    Depends on Q2, but will stay the same in most instances
    6. How many redundancies have been made (either by economic reasons or change of conditions)?
    None that I know of, RM seem to be hiring as apose to firing.
    7. What new opportunities are opended up (I don't mean moving on up the managed service provider)?
    Moving up the technical ladder; support consultants, implementation of networks etc. Management ladder, e.g. Team Leader, Project Management.
    8. If there are any Network Managers left in BSF schools are they supported and allowed to stay - or are they "encouraged" to move on or up?
    Whatever they want to do, but RM are very good at promoting those that deserve it
    10. During the Interim service do things remain the same or do new systems, software and hardware get forced on us?
    Things remain the same, except the helpdesk
    11. How are hours, holidays and salaries affected?
    TUPE means that they stay the same
    12. How are the remaining IT staff supported (local, remote only)?
    Depends on requirements, usually both local and remote
    13. What sort of improvement (or worsening) of service is provided by having EVERY IT call routing through a possibly foreign helpdesk?
    It cuts down on the annoying calls, e.g. My computer wont turn on; because its unplugged! The hardest part is getting teachers to give the correct information

    If you are prepared to work hard then getting Tuped will be the best thing that can happen to you as it will help you progress your career.

    These are my opinions and experiences only, and in no way am I speaking on behalf of my employer
    Last edited by ngreenwood; 6th April 2009 at 10:18 PM.

  10. #9

    russdev's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Leicestershire
    Posts
    6,930
    Thank Post
    709
    Thanked 552 Times in 367 Posts
    Blog Entries
    3
    Rep Power
    204
    To make clear all RMs telephone operations are in UK (one of two places Oxfordshire or Glasgow). They have Indian office (which deals with RM online side of stuff plus do technical stuff overnight remotely on customer servers if need be.)

    Russ

  11. #10

    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    8
    Thank Post
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
    Rep Power
    0

    BSF - The truth

    Richie,

    I'll chose my words carefully mate. Having worked on both sides of the fence, (if you get my meaning) I'll happily give you the benefit of my experience:

    1. Network managers roles normally cease to exist, simple as. Some schools retain their previous Network manager as a go between, or for looking after systems that the outsourced company doesn't support. Its a managed service mate, in my experience the network manager isn't needed.

    2. Ah one of the big problems with BSF is flexability. The problem with one size fits all is, it doesn't. The level of flexability you have comes from hammering out the school's needs in the endless bargining that goes on prior to go live, so be pro-active mate.

    3. School's problem to resolve

    4. Helpdesk location - Depends on the company. Some have a help desk in a central location, other's just log calls via the engineers onsite as the work is requested. Not heard of one in India yet though!!!
    basically managed service does not work without a good quality help desk. This is how the company gets paid, and how the LEA's claw money back for SLA's missed.

    5. Again, this will be combination of hard bargining and what's in the contract. Managed services are normally kit plus maintenance, then any other service via heated debate!

    6. None as far as I'm aware. Desktop support staff are TUPE'd straight across and normally get the best deal. System managers either, continue to work for school in some other form, accept a slightly different role with the company or simply chose to find another job. You need to get whoever is incharge of the TUPE process to push for details. Your poisition is very strong prior to the migrartion. (That's what I did). I was lucky, my school gave me 12 months notice of my role disappearing and could not have been more supportive in trying to help me find another job. Training/SIMS/Whiteboard's/Securus/Website are all areas where you might be able to continue to work for the school. Just remember though Richie, this is 2009 and no job is for life.

    7. Very few in my experience

    8. See point 1

    10. Depends if your a re-build or new build. Normally Managed services want to start out with new kit. This diecision is normally taken at LCC level.

    11. If your TUPE'd they are the same for at least 12 month's I think. You are legally protected. Private companies normally can offer better benefits, and may want you to sign a new contract after 12 months. You might be asked to work full time or you might not, totally depends. You are almost certain to get better training and career development. bear in mind RM were voted the UK's number 1 company to work for so its not all bad news.

    12. depends on size of school. One manager will normally look after 3-4 school's so you should see the boss once a week minimum.

    13. Primary school's get a good deal, secondary schools, I've never heard any school say the service was better under BSF. Truth

    If you are more than 2 years away from going live on BSF I'd not worry too much. Based on the country's finances, the current depression, and that the college's have all ground to a halt due the govement no longer having funds, I think BSF will simply fizzle out. When labour lose the next general election, the the whole project is likely to be scrapped anyway.

    Moby

  12. #11

    tmcd35's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Norfolk
    Posts
    5,707
    Thank Post
    855
    Thanked 901 Times in 746 Posts
    Blog Entries
    9
    Rep Power
    329
    Quote Originally Posted by Moby View Post
    Richie,
    When labour lose the next general election, the the whole project is likely to be scrapped anyway.

    Moby
    OT: (but irresitable political quip!) - I never thought I'd find a compelling reason to vote tory Oh-hum.

  13. #12

    russdev's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Leicestershire
    Posts
    6,930
    Thank Post
    709
    Thanked 552 Times in 367 Posts
    Blog Entries
    3
    Rep Power
    204
    i think what this shows is that big differences between contracts. Key is this one persons view in there LA etc and different companies and different LA contracts have different experiences.

    Russ

  14. #13

    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    London
    Posts
    3,156
    Thank Post
    116
    Thanked 529 Times in 452 Posts
    Blog Entries
    2
    Rep Power
    124
    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    OT: (but irresitable political quip!) - I never thought I'd find a compelling reason to vote tory Oh-hum.
    Not sure that this gives you a reason. I could well see the next government scrapping BSF but keeping the idea of "managed service providers" As most people seem to feel, the driving force is saving money. If you can save money on the IT and save money by not building new schools, what's to lose? (and yes, that is a rhetorical question!)

  15. #14

    russdev's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Leicestershire
    Posts
    6,930
    Thank Post
    709
    Thanked 552 Times in 367 Posts
    Blog Entries
    3
    Rep Power
    204
    Lot of people are thinking that torys might not get away with scarpping bsf as might be bad pr move.

    Russ

  16. #15

    Geoff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Fylde, Lancs, UK.
    Posts
    11,804
    Thank Post
    110
    Thanked 583 Times in 504 Posts
    Blog Entries
    1
    Rep Power
    224
    OTOH there's a vast hole in the governments budget for the next 5 years that needs plugging up.

SHARE:
+ Post New Thread
Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Northgate
    By IanT in forum BSF
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 24th July 2009, 12:22 PM
  2. redstone dns problem?
    By RabbieBurns in forum General Chat
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 30th May 2008, 10:53 AM
  3. Myths and Facts
    By beeswax in forum BSF
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 28th March 2007, 04:29 PM
  4. pm facts
    By russdev in forum General Chat
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 8th April 2006, 07:24 PM

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •