PCG Case Study: Law Firm on NH Seacoast

Dave Hodgdon from PCG talks with John Maher about the services PCG provided for a law firm on the NH seacoast. He explains why the firm reached out to PCG, and then he talks about how PCG helped the firm improve its network and security.

John Maher: Hi, I’m John Maher and I’m here today with Dave Hodgdon, CEO and founder of PCG, a managed service and IT provider with headquarters in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Today we’re doing a case study on a law firm on the New Hampshire Seacoast. Welcome, Dave.

Dave Hodgdon: Welcome, John. How are we doing today?

Why Did This Law Firm Contact PCG?

John: Good, thanks. So Dave, tell me a little bit about this law firm in New Hampshire and what the background was and why they came to you for their IT needs.

Dave: We got called in, and this was a unique scenario in that there were many moving targets, John, that you don’t typically see. So the law firm was growing, the law firm was looking to make a move. They were acquiring a new building to move into, they’re looking to make a change from their existing managed service provider, and there were a lot of technology desires that they wanted. So there were many things to be addressed. So we were able to have that discussion with them and come up with a strategy.

IT Strategy PCG Implemented for the Firm

John: Okay. So what was that strategy, and what were especially some of the first few things that you implemented?

Dave: Anytime when there’s that many items, we have to get the full audit of what they currently own, especially where they’re making a move of what was in place. They had some shared infrastructure where they’re at, so there’s some items that they didn’t have that they needed to have. They’re in a shared office space.

We were able to take the walkthrough at the new building and determine where everyone was going to sit, where they wanted to have the video conferencing, where they wanted wireless, and where they wanted their printers. So we were able to do the walkthrough and determine what we needed. So there was a very large wiring project to be done, and when you’re dealing with an older building, it’s not the easiest thing to do. So we came up with a wiring process there.

We also did the risk assessment of where they’re at and what they’re doing. And the last big part, which was big, is they were in a usual Microsoft 365 setup on a shared exchange, which is not the norm. So we had to get them off that shared exchange server and set them up on their own 365 platform.

The Network Assessment

John: Okay. Was there anything else that came up in the network assessment that you needed to address?

Dave: Most of the PCs were aging. A lot of them wanted multiple monitors. And the big thing during the assessment was the infrastructure that we knew we needed, especially when you go to the new building. New switching, new wireless access points. We helped them get in touch with Comcast to get a good circuit there and helping them get the work from there. They also had many remote workers, so it was important that we had a remote workforce policy in place for them as well.

Risk Assessments and Creating an IT Roadmap

John: Okay. And so then talk a little bit about some of the tactics that were implemented maybe once you got over the first little hurdles of the things that you needed to implement. What were some of the other things that you put in place to really get them up to speed with their IT?

Dave: Since we knew the movie was coming, we thought it was important to start with the risk assessment, where they stood, to get an idea where they’re at. So that was one thing. We had to come up with a plan. Their current plan with their existing managed service provider, what they were getting, and what they weren’t and having that discussion to make sure we had the right plan in place.

We knew that the wiring at the new site had to be in place for not only their new phone system, their data for their computers, as well as the wireless connections for notebooks, phones. And yes, when we ran that wireless assessment, anytime we deal with an older building, John, it’s not as easy as you want it to be, so we use a pretty cool product to help us design where the access points will go.

And once you understand the building, if it’s got wallpaper, certain copper, the type of ceiling, the structures in place, that it’s not as easy as one big open room and putting an access point there. So it was clear to us where they wanted the wireless, so we help them address that. Provided them some references for other legal firms, which helped out. We gave him a budget for not only what they had to move to make the move for the new equipment, but also gave them some things down the road that they might need.

Outcomes of Working With PCG

John: And then, tell me what the outcome of the project was. How long have you been working with them? And how are things going now with their IT?

Dave: Yeah, it’s been about a year now. So after we did the original project, after two months, we did our first IT strategy review, just because there were a lot of moving pieces. New attorneys coming in, a new building, and anytime there’s new building, of course there’s new office furniture, there’s new carpet, just everything. There’s, “We didn’t think about this. Can we do this? Can we move this over here?”

So having some flexibility was important to them, because when you’re dealing with an old building from the early 1800s with three floors, the most important part, as I explained to their leadership team is, let’s wire whatever we can now, no matter what, because you will be moving and they plan to stay in this building, so let’s get it done right. The infrastructure was a big part. They were moving more to the cloud. They wanted more wireless. So we wanted them to have that good PC experience, John, whether it’s wired or wireless.

Moving them was another big thing… I forgot to mention earlier that we actually moved them from the old building, so once we had the new building set up, we were able to physically plan after hours of shutting down where they were, bringing them to the new site, staying till late in the hours that evening to get them running, and then be there the first morning to make sure they’re all functioning. And that’s a good, additional service that we’re able to help with that move.

During the pre stages, we knew new equipment was needed. So ahead of time, we did all the new PC setups. So those are the ones that weren’t being replaced in the new location. We had the new firewall set up at the new location. And when we moved them over, were we able to get them connected to that.

One of the biggest projects though, was moving over the 365 where they’re on a shared host exchange. So it wasn’t easy from the previous vendor to get the necessary data, but through our technical teams’ work, we were able to migrate them over to 365. We also determined some of their setup, John, was not correct, so it took us an extra month to get a lot of that straightened out for them.

But we’re happy with the onboarding. We worked with the point of contact at the firm. We were able to help the remote users. They are happy campers in their new building. They have a network that they have adapted well to, and it also gives them the flexibility to add, and add future employees, and give them the services they need.

Contact PCG for Your Managed IT Needs

John: All right. Well, that’s really great information about setting up IT for this law firm on the New Hampshire Seacoast. Thanks again for speaking with me today.

Dave: My pleasure, John.

John: For more information, you can visit the PCG website at or call (603)431-4121.