ARRC Technology Implements Doyenz and LabTech to Resolve Major Issues with Zenith Infotech

We went live with the LabTech solution in April of this year and never had a second thought about our decision.

Shane Swanson, Director of Operations, ARRC Technology
Partner Profile: 

Located in Bakersfield, Calif., ARRC Technology is a three-time listed Inc. 5000 company and Master Managed Service Provider. Founded 18 years ago, ARRC specializes in providing managed services; network design, installation, maintenance and support; telecommunications solutions; and voice and data structured cabling for small and mid-sized businesses. They currently support 177 clients on managed service agreements, and were named twice as a top 100 MSP by MSPmentor.

Client: 

ARRC has implemented Doyenz and LabTech for various SMB clients. To date, they have converted more than 80 Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) units to Doyenz, and have over 1,500 nodes supported by LabTech’s Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) tools, according to Shane Swanson, Director of Operations for ARRC.

Challenge: 

ARRC was previously using Zenith for both cloud storage and remote monitoring and management, but was not pleased with the technology or support on either side.

“A lot of the same problems we have had with the BDR we were having with the RMM," Swanson says. "Their support was very challenging at times and some of the calls we would receive regarding monitor alerts were frustrating. We quickly realized we had outgrown the Zenith solution and needed to migrate to a solution that would grow with our business.”

Swanson says that as time went on, they lost contact with the Zenith Vice President who had initially brought ARRC on as a partner. Then they started to lose contact with the account managers as well.

“I left several voicemail messages and sent several email messages to our primary account manager over a period of 30 days without a single reply,” he says. “About a week later I got a call from the ‘Red Team’ announcing that they were our new account managers. It was all downhill from that point on. The personal relationship we had with them for the past couple years no longer mattered.”

One of the problems ARRC suffered through was when Zenith was unwilling to work preemptively with its partners. For example, Microsoft released a mandatory update to resolve a license issue with Office 2007. The critical update had to be deployed to all machines in order to be compliant with the licensing, yet Zenith labeled the Windows update as “optional.” Swanson said Zenith told him he had to manually install this on all 1,500+ devices.

“Another problem with Zenith was their limited scripting engine,” Swanson says. “They say they have one, yet nobody in support can tell you how to use it, and none of their partners can tell you how to use it either. We knew scripting was going to be the way of the future for our business so we began looking into other options.”

Swanson says that after ARRC started having major challenges with the BDR—in addition with the existing Zenith RMM issues—they decided to switch both at once and began the process of evaluating alternate solutions.

ARRC needed an easy, cost-effective way to switch to a more robust RMM and secure reliable business continuity for their existing BDRs. Doyenz was the business continuity solution of choice, and the transition was done all over the wire providing failover, testing in the virtual lab and validation of backups—something they never had with Zenith. On the RMM side, they had evaluated other solutions and were ready to sign with Kaseya when they heard about LabTech.
 

Solution: 

Swanson says that ARRC completed the LabTech demo and upon evaluating the solution realized how much simpler their scripting was to configure than Kaseya, yet was even more powerful. Within four hours they had their demo of LabTech working and deployed to a few test networks. Within a few weeks, they realized this was the solution they needed to continue to support their growing MSP business.

ARRC made the decision to move off of Zenith for both RMM and BDR simultaneously. Conversion of the RMM side occurred fairly quick. The BDR migration took roughly two weeks for one dedicated engineer to complete. The biggest challenge was installing the LabTech agents. Their technicians had to manually go in and install the agents on all of the equipment due to the limitations with the Zenith scripting engine.

“We created a login script per network," Swanson says. "So when those clients logged in, the installation of the agent was forced. The slow side to that script was waiting for clients to login. This is where we ran into minor challenges.”

Although the transition off of Zenith was not seamless, the ARRC team saw the benefits almost immediately.

“Once the transition was complete, we began to immediately see the savings in both monthly payments and technical efficiency,” he says. “All my technicians love it so much more. There are so many more feature sets they can do, and the application itself is much more friendly and easier to navigate than Zenith.”

Swanson says one of the key benefits with LabTech is the feature sets one can do without physically logging into the client’s workstation or server, such as: stopping/disabling services, ending processes, uninstalling/blacklisting applications, cancelling print jobs, sending test print jobs, and creating/modifying scheduled tasks.

“It’s all under your control at that point,” he says. “You control what monitors you want to be alerted on. You control what patches you want to install.”

“One of the other really nice features of LabTech that we really like is the fact that you can right-click on an entire site, an entire group – that group can contain all of your clients, all of your servers, only certain types of workstations, any one of those — and mass deploy a script out to everybody,” he adds.

For example, if you want to install a new version of Adobe Acrobat Reader, it’s as simple as right-clicking and selecting install. It will then queue all devices and complete the installation. Before LabTech, Swanson’s team would have to manually login to all 1,500+ devices to install the necessary applications.

Swanson estimates ARRC saves roughly 40 to 60 hours a month of labor since implementing LabTech. Additionally, they experienced huge overall investment savings on a monthly basis.

“When we look at what we paid for Zenith over the last three years it makes us nauseous because we could have bought LabTech three or four times over,” Swanson says. “I saved enough money switching from Zenith just on the RMM side to be able to switch to LabTech on their monthly payment plan and buy an entire new HP BladeSystem c7000 enclosure. And, I still saved roughly $1,500 a month after deducting those two payments!”

Swanson adds: “The larger you are the more you’re going to save. If you buy 100 agents from LabTech, you don’t get the same price point as if you purchased 2,500 licenses. I almost doubled the nodes I have with LabTech and still ended up cutting my payment in nearly a third of what I was paying Zenith.”
 

Key Benefits: 
  • Increased functionality and ease of use, including:
    • Simple control center application used for monitoring and managing all of devices
    • The amount of actions that can be performed on each monitored computer or server without even logging into the equipment
    • The ability to customize the solution around ARRC’s business through their groups, schedules and templates
  • Powerful Scripting Engine
    • The ability to quickly deploy a script across an entire site or all sites with a simple right-click in a third of the time it took with Kaseya
    • Custom fields that ARRC could create to use as variables to help with their scripting
  • Dramatic reduction in false positives alerting
  • Dedication of sales, support and development staff
    • Having U.S.-based support again is a big key benefit
    • Their entire team is very dedicated to customer service and ensuring partner satisfaction
    • They continue to invest in development and enhancement work to ensure their product remains cutting edge
  • Cost savings/ROI in the first month

“We went live with the LabTech solution in April of this year and never had a second thought about our decision. LabTech is almost half the cost of Kaseya, and gives you more power and a better solution.” Swanson concludes. “How can you go wrong?”

Learn more about ARRC Technology at arrc.com. To become a Doyenz partner, email sales@doyenz.com or call +1 877.341.7342.