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Inter Valley Health Plan Hires Tec-Refresh To Develop New IT Infrastructure

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Company to work with not-for-profit’s IT department to architect, design, implement new platform

Tec-Refresh, a nationwide provider of IT infrastructure, cyber security, data and networking solutions and support services, announced today that Inter Valley Health Plan has contracted them to develop their new IT infrastructure in anticipation of implementing new cloud-based solutions.

The company will work with the not-for-profit, federally qualified, Medicare Advantage Organization’s IT department to architect, design and implement a new platform while seamlessly migrate its network without disruption.

“We’re honored to be the firm of choice for this comprehensive project,” said Efrem Gonzales, Founder and CEO of Tec-Refresh. “With this initiative, we’ll add value and reduce operation costs, spearhead an expeditious and seamless transition of its data networks, and empower the organization to provide a measurable increase in service quality, communication and consistency.”

“We needed a partner that can take our design vision and implement it using best business practices. Furthermore, we operate in a highly regulated environment. It means the project has to be completed with minimal impact to end users and virtually zero downtime,” said Hatim Mouissa, Manager of Information Technology and Operations of Inter Valley Health Plan. “We went with Tec-Refresh because of their deep infrastructure expertise in implementing best of breed solutions to improve performance and allow for scalability. We’re looking forward to launching this new infrastructure in the coming weeks!”

About Inter Valley Health Plan

Since 1979, Inter Valley Health Plan is a not-for-profit, federally qualified, Medicare Advantage Organization with more than 25,000 members throughout Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Riverside and Orange counties. In addition to the health plans offered, the organization provides useful health education and wellness programs for members and the community. More information is available at www.ivhp.com.

About Tec-Refresh, Inc.

Tec-Refresh designs, delivers and supports technology solutions that become the foundation of its clients’ businesses. This includes network storage, cyber security, managed services, virtualization and data infrastructure solutions. The company is headquartered in Ontario, Calif., with technicians deployed across the U.S. to serve the needs of customers nationwide. More information is available at www.tec-refresh.com.

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© 2017 by Tec-Refresh, Inc. All rights reserved. 

How To Implement A New IT Infrastructure in 8 Weeks

3D illustration. Image background concept of cloud computing.

3D illustration. Image background concept of cloud computing.

Most organizations putting up with legacy IT systems will tell you that they desperately want to migrate to a platform that will improve performance and allow for scalability. Their resistance to doing so may be partly due to budget constraints, but an even bigger issue is the time such initiatives take; months in many cases.

It doesn’t have to be that way, though. The key to streamlining the design and deployment processes for mid-sized companies and non-profits is in the preparation work. I’ve been in this business for nearly two decades and have seen all kinds of environments. None were more challenging, though, then when an organization fails to take the time to plan a migration well.

In that spirit, here’s a framework from which organizations can create a workable strategy that allows you to implement a new infrastructure in as little as eight weeks.

Give Time For The Discovery Process, Including Due Diligence
This should include key business and technical stakeholders from the client’s IT organization as well as members of the vendor’s sales, engineering and professional services team. The objective of the process is to quantify the current environment and document the required as well as expected outcomes. Be sure all parties discuss and validate the business’ functional and technical requirements of the project and review any known or potential risks. Your service provider, if you’re using one, should present its findings and recommendations on this front to ensure complete alignment with your objectives before implementation, planning and execution.

Define The Test Planning Process
Make sure it identifies the various unit, system and functional tests required to adequately demonstrate that the new infrastructure is working as designed and intended. The process should also describe the methodology for executing the plan and reviewing the outcomes with you. Specify how you will accept and reject the results. As important, the document should discuss how the service provider must respond to the rejected results to gain acceptance.

Alerts for New System Releases / Planning for Upgrades
Require that your service provider notifies you of new system releases on a regular basis. I recommend a minimum of two strategic planning sessions per year to summarize all of the new system upgrades being proposed by the underlying manufacturers. As a general rule, I’m not one to promote blind upgrades unless they produce a compelling business impact. Planning for an upgrade can range from days to weeks or even months depending on the complexity. Schedule four to six weeks to complete a simple upgrade and eight to 16 weeks to perform a complex upgrade.

Outline Your Implementation Process Includes Three Steps
It’s not enough to know how you’ll do the prep, but exactly how the implementation will be done. It should include three distinct steps:

  • Initial Assessment and Integrity Check
    Be sure the technicians fully prepare and test your system before it arrives on site so it is ready for installation. This includes:

    • Performing a complete equipment inventory
    • Ordering any additional or missing equipment if necessary
    • Racking and installing all equipment in a specified lab
    • Serializing all of the equipment
    • Downloading all software licenses and right to use permissions
    • Conducting all software and firmware updates
    • Performing translations by an assigned specialist
    • Inputting all network IP addresses into the system
    • Burning in the system and run diagnostics to identify any problems
    • Conducting a complete test of all hardware and software
  • Evaluation For Cutover
    Make certain that the service provider and other stakeholders are on site when your new system goes live and ready to handle any issues that come about to make any changes necessary. This will ensure that your new infrastructure is working just the way you want it.
  • Registration & Maintenance
    Each manufacturer has a specific process for registration and deployment of gear. You’ll need to take great pains to make sure you deploy every system as per their specs. This ensures the manufacturer will accept the system for maintenance coverage, and that their records are properly updated to include the fact that the system went live. Be sure you and your team provide the vendors accurate inventories for their records. With more and more manufacturers requiring maintenance to get access to patches and updates, this thoroughness is more important than ever.

About the Author: Efrem Gonzales is the Founder and CEO of Tec-Refresh, a nationwide provider of IT infrastructure, cyber security, data and networking solutions and support services. He can be reached at efrem.gonzales@tec-refresh.com.