Case Studies > The Central Office & Community Outreach branches
Age Concern Tower Hamlets

One of R J Partners’ longstanding clients, Age Concern Tower Hamlets is a community organisation with over 40 members of staff & 50 volunteers and plays a major role in supporting the needs of older people in the local area.

With their main office based at Russia Lane (Bethnal Green), a secondary site a few miles away at Appian Court (Bow), and several much smaller outreach sites scattered around East London, R J Partners were asked to devise a model to support the entire organisation being able to have access to the same information.

After considering the implications, cost and scalability of the project, the successful proposal was a Terminal Server / Thin Client solution. It involved basing servers at the main office, and having ‘Thin Client’ machines connect via broadband connections at each site into the network at Russia Lane.

The benefits of this solution are listed below:

  Traditional PC’s Thin Clients
Cost per unit £300 - £400 £150
Setup costs 1.5 days system engineer fee 0.5 days system engineer fee
Cost of each site connection (modem / line / etc) Same Same
Timescale from planning to implementation and user readiness 2 weeks 1 week
Management / maintenance cost over 1 year period (OS patches / AV checks) 4 days engineer time 1 day engineer time


The biggest benefits were;
• Scalability (simple, quick setup, easy to add / reduce),
• Significantly lower initial / maintenance cost (hardware / labour),
• Centralised control (software installations take place in one place),
• Enhanced security (centralised backup, ‘Thin’s’ relatively more secure)
• User experience (no matter which site users log from, they have access to same programs, settings and data).

The model allows outreach sites to be installed within a week’s notice and is kept absolutely separate from any existing network in place at the host premises (e.g. the smaller outreach offices currently occupy one or two rooms of an entire building with their own infrastructure).

In addition to the user’s computer experience, a VoIP system was also introduced at the organisation, giving them a ‘virtual switchboard’ that allowed free calls between any of the sites (and cheaper outgoing calls for external numbers), ability to transfer calls between sites easily (needing only one reception for example, for several locations), and control over “Caller Line Identification” of outgoing calls.

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