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Podcast Season 6 Episode 4 – TIP Technologies and NeoSystems Partner – Hosting

February 05, 2021 | BY: Neosystems
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In this last episode with our partners at TIP Technologies, we are excited to hear from NeoSystems’ Chief Technology Officer, Rob Wilson, and TIP Technologies’ Principal Consultant, Frank Hutto. While we’ve covered the general partnership, reselling, and consultancy between the teams, this episode covers the Neo.Cloud hosting solution and how it helps TIP Technologies provide the best and most secure platform.

Transcript

Erin Keating:
Welcome to NeoCast. Join our experts each week as we discuss strategies and solutions for your businesses in managed IT, cybersecurity, government contracting and much, much more.

Erin Keating:
Sharing is caring, and we’ve got top-shelf advice to help you navigate today’s biggest challenges. Let’s get to it.

Erin Keating:
Hello, everybody and welcome back to another episode of NeoCast, NeoSystems’ podcast to bring you news in the information technology world, cyber security world, managed services world. We are excited to be in season six, and this is our fourth and final episode with TIP Technologies although, of course, we always welcome them back on in the future to discuss their expertise.

Erin Keating:
But we’ve talked about quite a few things around the partnership with TIP Technologies and NeoSystems, and I’m excited to be welcoming today the chief technology officer, Rob Wilson of NeoSystems, and Frank Hutto, the principal consultant for TIP Technologies. We’ve talked about reselling, we’ve talked about consultancy, we’ve talked about the general partnership, but today we want to talk a little bit more about the hosting of TIP Technologies’ technology in the NeoCloud system.

Erin Keating:
I’m wondering if I could point to you first, Frank, to ask you, when you were looking at this partnership from a hosting perspective, what were some of the unique benefits that you felt NeoSystems really provided in that aspect?

Frank Hutto:
To start with, we had a longstanding relationship with the company from previous hosting arrangements and older customers that we’ve had and everything so it was a good standing business relationship we had with that. Then building up from there, looking at the company and saying that with their cybersecurity infrastructure, what they have in regard to CMMC, DFARS information, the NIST and CMMC overall, everything rolled together there made it a very enticing environment for us to say this is a good place for us to build up from. Because other environments that we looked at did not have the breadth of security that we thought was needed in the space right now.

Erin Keating:
If I may, and we’ll just sort of get this topic out upfront and over with, and we don’t want to harp on it too long, but, Rob, maybe you could talk to us a little bit. In the news right now, it is all about cyber breaches and the software supply chain. We don’t need to mention anything by name, but it’s become more evident that it’s important for software organizations to also rely on cloud environments that are heavily secured, as Frank just spoke to, and especially when you’re working with organizations that are directly working with the government or any kind of larger corporations. So I’m just curious how you all internally have been talking about some of the latest news and how that really offers some form of confidence actually for a lot of the folks that you actually host within your NeoSystems cloud.

Rob Wilson:
Sounds good. Thanks, Erin. Thanks for having us. Appreciate you giving us this forum.

Rob Wilson:
Yeah. I mean the current FireEye, that’s what’s in the news right now as we’re recording this, and I think the message for the defense industrial base and any commercial business, really, not just those that are government service-related, is that you’ve got sensitive data, you’ve got maybe unclassified information in this case, that’s what we’re trying to protect specifically, but it’s controlled. It’s private, it’s proprietary. These systems, the TIP solution often is hosted locally on premise. It’s either in a very hot deposit or possibly it’s down the hall, or maybe you’ve got your own infrastructure that you’ve built and it certainly in a good place, but your business is not really securing that environment or that data, that set of technology. Your business is manufacturing this widget or providing this service or that service to your customer.

Rob Wilson:
One of the things that this raises visibility to is your part-time IT guy or gal isn’t going to protect you from these things. Having a professional service, like our hosting service wrapped with the security blanket that we offer around CMMC and ITAR, the NIST standard that Frank mentioned, all those things play into being able to protect this data in the cloud with a set of professionals like ourselves, as opposed to trying to do it yourself, which really generates much more risk.

Erin Keating:
That’s a good point. Frank, given what TIP Technologies offers in the market, I would think that this is something that continues to help you all reach smaller customers, thinking about software as a service, that you are now engaged in a platform that allows you to hold that type of security close and present it actually as an offering of your technology. Can you talk a little bit more about that sort of automated approach to security and compliance and how that might help TIP Technologies when pushing out the product to a consumer base?

Frank Hutto:
Of course. Looking at the small to midsize companies, a lot of them have an IT infrastructure, but it’s usually small and their focus is really on delivering the computer to the user. They don’t have the breadth of knowledge usually to be able to ensure that their network infrastructure is compliant with everything that they need to, or that they can just barely maintain the ability to log into the network and keep that structure going. Trying to maintain all of their application structure becomes very difficult for them and understanding everything that they need to do to maintain that.

Frank Hutto:
So teaming with a company like Neo and TIP, and being able to offer that where they don’t have to worry about the complexities of setting up the architecture and maintaining the structure of the network and the security compliance information around that, just simplifies their jobs so much easier. It makes their day-to-day life simpler to manage. They don’t have to worry about the complexities of managing those issues and everything. They can provide for that and allow the experts at Neo to take care of those tasks for them. That’s what we’re going to help them by leveraging those experts as well.

Rob Wilson:
Erin, if I could jump in, the platform that we provide to TIP Technologies really enabled them to move from this on-premise type deployment to a cloud-based SaaS model. That’s exciting not only for TIP Technologies, but for their customers so it’s a more modern way to consume the product and all the benefits that Frank just mentioned is behind that. So rather than having dedicated infrastructure that they manage themselves at a higher cost, the cloud provides not only a more affordable solution, but one that can scale, one that you don’t have to go in and yank out a server and replace it when you’ve outgrown it. The beauty of the virtualization in the cloud is that when you need to scale up or scale down, that’s a configuration item and you’re up in a few minutes.

Erin Keating:
That’s great. I’ve talked to Marty Herbert quite a bit on your team, Rob, about change management, and I would imagine, Frank, with all of the integration of the different systems that your clients work with, whether it’s ERP integration or other systems that they need to integrate with, that the NeoSystems cloud offers a pretty seamless environment to also serve as a benefit for your clients from a change management perspective when they’re adopting new technology such as yours.

Frank Hutto:
Yes. Looking at how we can do that and from a hosting standpoint, being able to bring up the different technologies and being able to change the architecture up there relatively seamlessly, saying that we need to grow the server or scale back the server as their business changes over time, it makes it, again, very beneficial for the customer because as their budgets do change, it is complex and very difficult for them to be able to manage those capital assets. Bringing on new servers is a very expensive feature, and being able to manage that with Neo as a expenditure versus a capital line is much easier to take care of.

Erin Keating:
I know that we’ve been in this partnership for a few months now. When we first started, there was maybe one client that was being onboarded, a few more that were out there, and some that already existed in NeoSystems.

Erin Keating:
I’m wondering if you two would be willing to talk about perhaps a client that’s been completely onboarded and is now officially in the NeoSystems cloud with TIP Technologies. If we can’t mention names, that’s okay, but maybe just giving people a flavor for how that’s gone, what this client needed and how the solution, the co-solution, the partnership solution, really helped bring it to fruition.

Frank Hutto:
Well, we have one client in particular, can’t mention them by name yet, but they haven’t gone officially live yet because of complexities with their ERP go live, so that is holding them back a little bit. They’re really ready just about to go live with their TIP side, working with them diligently every day, keeping everything moving forward. Things are looking really good there and getting the entire integration between the complexities on the ERP and with technologies and the TIPQA software and TIP SFE platforms moving forward has been extremely dynamic. Working with the team, getting as the first customer really in the TIP Tech Cloud portion of the NeoCloud has been a real fun and exciting adventure that we’re going through and moving forward with them.

Frank Hutto:
We have another customer that’s coming online here in the next week or two that we’re going to start their adventure and then additional customers that are coming on in the same setup, just starting in the days and weeks, right after that as well. So, overall, setup is going to grow quickly from here as we continue to move on.

Rob Wilson:
It wasn’t a surprise to me, but I think to the customer and maybe to you as well, Frank, that when you guys started operating inside the cloud, that the perception might be, “Hey, we’re further away from our environment. There’s some distance or some latency or some lag that might happen between the end-user and the applications.” But I think you all found actually it’s a very high-performance environment, so the environment for outweighs whatever latency or lag you might see between your manufacturing floor and the cloud itself.

Rob Wilson:
Was that a surprise to you? I think your customer, it was, but that was one of the added benefits as well, right?

Frank Hutto:
Yeah. So far they’ve seen that performance has been fairly decent what some customers and general review and that we’re looking at. We have general SaaS area that we’re allowing some customers to do in what we call a playground area to do general reviews on. They’re noticing that as they go in there and just do a quick review, that they get faster performance looking in our playground than they do looking in their general area network so their internal network performance is slower than going out to the internet and looking. That is a interesting dynamic that they do see.

Rob Wilson:
The other benefit, if I could tag on, was most on-premise deployments, rarely do they have a disaster recovery component because they’re on or near the shop floor. They don’t have a second site necessarily. Some do, but many don’t.

Rob Wilson:
One of the things that comes with Technologies’ SaaS deployment within the NeoSystems cloud is disaster recovery is included. It’s built in. The virtual machines and all the infrastructure is replicated to our disaster recovery site. In case of a disaster from a recovery point of view, we have a fairly strict SLA. It varies from customer to customer, but the four-to-eight-hour recovery time and recovery points in the two-hour range, as far as even just having a disaster recovery site and having that kind of RPO and RTO is something of an added benefit for many of these customers who never built that in to their design initially.

Erin Keating:
Yeah. I would say that something that I’ve been learning a lot in the industry, and as I sort of always joke, I’m the resident Luddite on these phone calls, but that security maybe a lot of TIP Technologies’ customers because they’re manufacturers or large organizations like that, they might have recovery plans, for instance, if power goes out, or if there’s a natural disaster, or if a machine breaks down. But a lot of people aren’t necessarily thinking, and maybe even are hesitant as you guys were talking about, of moving into this cloud environment because they’re so used to a physical on-premise environment, let alone their own manufacturing environment, right?

Erin Keating:
So the idea that you can provide this confidence around it and help with that change management, moving people through the adoption of different types of technologies that run their companies, and then also helping to make them aware of where are the other places that your systems could be breached or brought down and how does a partner like NeoSystems really provide that cushion as well. What you’re speaking to as a disaster recovery plan is really having that knowledge around how to stop the breakdown of any of their operations based on anything that’s happening in the cyberspace around their product and implementation.

Erin Keating:
So I think that’s a really great benefit, and it’s one that we’ve seen moving through the industry for quite a bit of time, except for now, it’s finally starting to get very popular and very much in the news and very much the front of CEO and CFO’s minds when they’re thinking about spending and how do they hold their budgets together for these things, the Internet of Things, the Industrial Internet of Things, all of these things relate. We’ll hear the Internet of Medical Things. Every single industry is being impacted by needing to progress towards a more stable environment.

Erin Keating:
So I’m just excited to continue to learn about all of these new partners that NeoSystems is bringing on and the work that TIP Technologies does. It’s these little industries, well, they’re very big industries. But for me, I wouldn’t normally be thinking about this type of automation or workflow process software technology. So it’s been exciting for me to learn about it, and I really appreciate both you, Frank and Rob, being on here to help us round out the story of this great partnership.

Erin Keating:
If there’s any parting words that you guys have, please feel free to share that now. Otherwise, we will certainly wish our audience a Happy Holidays and hopefully an end to this very interesting and strange time of 2020, and a great new beginning in 2021. But Rob, Frank, please, by all means, close us out here.

Frank Hutto:
Now, just along with you there, I’d like to say Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, Happy Yule Day, Happy Boxing Day and Happy New Year to everybody and see everybody in the new year. Hopefully it does turn out to be a much better year in 2021.

Rob Wilson:
Yes. Thank you all for joining us. We’re certainly excited about our relationship with TIP Technologies and being able to elevate those things that are important to us as a society and to our government. So thank you also to those that are keeping us safe and have a great day. Thanks.

Erin Keating:
Thank you. Happy Holidays, everyone. We’ll be back in 2021 with more episodes to learn about NeoSystems and its various partners such as TIP Technologies. Thank you, guys.

Erin Keating:
The NeoSystems difference. We specialize in serving organizations of all sizes. In today’s fiercely competitive market, is your organization constantly searching for ways to gain the advantage over competitors? Smart organizations are paying more attention to their strategic back office operations. NeoSystems offers scalable back office services and solutions to improve your organization with a team of industry experts, industry-leading information technology tools, and an advanced technical infrastructure. From software hosting and security solutions to managed accounting services, NeoSystems custom build solutions and services that are tailored to fit your organization’s needs. Check us out on the internet at NeoSystemsC-O-R-P.com. That’s NeoSystemsCorp.com.

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