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IT case studies
Moving the impossible: Relocating BlackRock in 24 weeks
The challenge: Moving IT equipment for 4,000 staff outside of core business hours
In 2016, Gattaca Projects partnered with global investment management corporation BlackRock to deliver their move to their new London headquarters in Drapers Gardens, Bank - a significant challenge for BlackRock. With 4,000 staff split across two separate locations in London, BlackRock did not have the capacity within their own IT team to undertake the vast operation. As well as the relocation of IT equipment for 4,000 staff, BlackRock required:
- The Windows operating system to be updated for 2,500 users
- Hardware to be updated to a higher specification of equipment, including telephone systems, printers and scanners
- Old hardware to be removed
- Post-move desktop support and training on new software and hardware
- BlackRock partnered with Gattaca Projects to deliver the project, including the supply and management of the delivery team.
To ensure that business operations were not impacted, each business unit had to be moved in full over a weekend period. With such a complex task at hand, Gattaca Projects began the assignment with a six week project scoping and planning exercise to scope out the recruitment requirements for additional IT resource.
Each weekend move varied in terms of the number of users per business unit (between 100 – 350 users) and was conducted by a team of 20-40 people. A typical weekend move included:
- Friday evening – decommission of equipment of the business unit being moved
- Saturday – the recommission of the new equipment and any required software updates, followed by a hostname, network connection and hardware check
- Sunday – secondary testing and any remaining recommissions
A weekend move was followed by support and training to ensure all users were aware of how the new software worked and were not experiencing any issues. The overall project was completed by 123 IT professionals, over a 24 week delivery period. This was followed by five weeks of final testing and reviews with BlackRock.
Despite set timelines and the need for additional IT resource, the project was completed successfully. Aside from more efficiently running systems with better protection from cyber attacks, the upgraded software and hardware put in place ensured BlackRock was future proofed for five to seven years before they would need more updates.
Darren Chapple Head of DUE, BlackRock said:
“My team have all been extremely impressed with the quality and dedication of staff that Gattaca Projects have provided. The supply of desktop IT resources and the professional management of the project have ensured a high standard of quality and efficient transition within the strict given timeframes. I would happily recommend Gattaca Projects to any organisation without hesitation.”