Summary

With 75 office locations, and a budget totaling several hundred million dollars, the organization is one of the largest voluntary health nonprofits in the United States. It is dedicated to funding research, finding cures, ensuring access to treatments for blood cancer patients, and improving the quality of life for those patients and their families.

Opengear’s Resilience Management Gateways, featuring Smart OOB and embedded Failover to Cellular connectivity technologies have enabled the customer to easily set up network connections at new office locations, saving time and money and removing obstacles when it comes to implementing and managing network equipment across the country.

The Challenge

The health organization not only has 75 locations spread across the United States, but the organization also moves several offices every year. It had been using POTS lines and modems for its network connectivity needs at each location, but experienced persistent issues with this solution.

The organization encountered trouble with lines not working, confusion with multiple local carriers and new addresses leading to bills not being paid and lines being turned off, and even physical lines simply being accidentally unplugged. Having to transfer a physical line added a cumbersome task to the already long list of requirements for each office move. Using POTS lines and modems also limited the organization to connecting only a single piece of equipment (the router), leaving other equipment inaccessible remotely. The POTS solutions proved costly as well – around $50 per line per month, multiplied by 75 locations. Connectivity through these lines was non-resilient, with office locations going offline if those primary connections failed.

The organization wanted to move to a cellular-based solution that would make moving to new offices simple, provide resilient connectivity, allow for all network equipment to be managed remotely, and be compatible with their existing investments in Cisco equipment and Verizon as a wireless provider.

The Solution

The nonprofit health organization now uses the Opengear Resilience Gateway at each of their office sites. The units provide Verizon 4G LTE cellular connectivity, convenient because of the nonprofit’s existing relationship with Verizon. Each Resilience Gateway features software selectable pinouts, easily compatible with the Cisco equipment at the organization’s offices, and with four serial ports is able to support several equipment connections. This means that when issues arise, technicians have remote access to all network equipment. Opengear’s Smart OOB™ and Failover to Cellular™ technology keeps networks online and makes sure that remote equipment is accessible even during primary connection failures.

The organization has discovered that Opengear’s Management Gateways save time in setting up connectivity in new or re-located offices, as well as in enabling more efficient remote management. The group is also saving budget with this solution, as it sees Opengear’s equipment paying for itself versus the cost of POTS lines (around $50 per month for each office). The organization is able to realize this savings of time and money while also reaping the benefits of a superior service.

Results

The Opengear Management Gateway is now a part of their standard office configuration with plans to incorporate Opengear devices in new offices.

According to the organization, “Opengear’s hardware is extremely helpful when primary connections go down and when we expand to new office locations. Opengear allows us easy access to remote devices, even when they can’t be reached any other way, and at a much lower cost than our previous method using telephone lines and modems. We’re very pleased with Opengear, and we’re definitely putting their hardware to great use.”

The new configuration achieved the following:

  • Opengear’s Management Gateways save the nonprofit time in setting up connectivity at new office locations, as well as through more efficient completion of remote network management duties.
  • Opengear also saves the organization money, with the equipment costs paying for itself versus the previous cost of POTS lines.
  • Difficulties in getting POTS lines up and running before an office could be connected are no longer a concern.
  • The organization is able to seamlessly continue its relationship with Verizon: each connection used by Opengear equipment simply adds another wireless product to the organization’s Verizon account.
  • Opengear’s solutions, featuring Smart Out-of-Band™ management and Failover to Cellular™, provide resilient connectivity and ensure that network equipment can be reached even when primary connections become unavailable.
  • The organization considers Opengear’s Management Gateway to be an essential component of its standard office configuration. It is including this equipment in plans for future office openings.